The Theater of Terrence McNally
A Critical Study
About the Book
This first book-length work on Terrence McNally shows how his decades in the theater have refined his thoughts on subjects like growing up gay in mannish, homophobic Texas, Shakespeare’s legacy in contemporary drama, and the life-giving power of forgiveness. McNally believes that the ability to forgive—a challenge to even the most high-minded—confirms our humanity because the wrongs done to us usually don’t deserve to be forgiven.
The author shows how McNally’s impeccable timing, his instinct for a good laugh line, and his preference for physical sensation and character over plot helps him reveal both what’s important to his people and why his people are important. These revelations can shake up audiences while providing a great evening at the theater.
About the Author(s)
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
One. Tradition and Tumult 5
Two. Alchemizing the Brew 34
Three. Confusions of the Heart 55
Four. Cauldrons of Deceit 76
Five. Sore, Spent and Sage 92
Six. New York States of Mind 143
Seven. The Madness of Art 173
Book Reviews & Awards
“Wolfe’s fine, thorough examination of McNally is woefully overdue…invaluable…Rrcommended”—Choice; “fills a long-standing gap in the scholarship on contemporary American playwrights. Wolfe’s astute analysis and his passionate and generous assessment of McNally’s oeuvre provide a comprehensive platform from which a critical body of work on McNally can be built. The questions and issues that Wolfe raise are ultimately compelling and assist in demonstrating the significance of McNally’s works”—Comparative Drama.