Lee A. Jacobus
(University of Connecticut)
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13 new plays span the major dramatic periods and include: Euripides’ Medea, Richard Brinsley Sheridan’s The Rivals, Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion, Federico Garcia Lorca’s Blood Wedding, and Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot.
Greater emphasis on current, critically acclaimed plays means more opportunities for students to see performances of the plays they read. Research into the most frequently produced plays of recent seasons informed the selection of new contemporary plays that have premiered since 2000. Among them are many prize winners, including Quiara Alegría Hudes’s Water by the Spoonful, Ayad Akhtar’s Disgraced, John Patrick Shanley’s Outside Mullingar, and Stephen Karam’s The Humans.
New commentaries and a revised casebook provide context for the plays and opportunities for analysis, discussion, and research. Six commentaries are new and include an excerpt from Bernard Shaw’s preface to Pygmalion and August Wilson’s speech on black theater and performance, "The Ground on Which I Stand." Two of the new commentaries are offered in the revised cultural casebook on "The Woman Question" in the late nineteenth century.
A trimmer look and feel makes the eighth edition more student- friendly than ever. We have reduced the trim size and the length while still offering a broad and balanced selection of plays, commentaries, and images.
LaunchPad Solo for Literature can be packaged at no additional cost and helps beginning drama and literature students learn and practice close reading and critical thinking skills in an interactive environment. Easy-to-use and easy-to-assign modules based on widely taught literary selections guide students through three common assignment types: responding to a reading, drawing connections between texts, and instructor-led collaborative close reading. Of particular relevance for drama students are: six interactive drama modules (based on six major plays), exercises on the elements of drama, and reading comprehension quizzes for several of the plays in the book.
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