Three Uses of the Knife: On the Nature and Purpose of Drama

Sold by Vintage
4
Free sample

The purpose of theater, like magic, like religion . . . is to inspire cleansing awe. What makes good drama? And why does drama matter in an age that is awash in information and entertainment? David Mamet, one of our greatest living playwrights, tackles these questions with bracing directness and aphoristic authority. He believes that the tendency to dramatize is essential to human nature, that we create drama out of everything from today’s weather to next year’s elections. But the highest expression of this drive remains the theater.
         With a cultural range that encompasses Shakespeare, Bretcht, and Ibsen, Death of a Salesman and Bad Day at Black Rock, Mamet shows us how to distinguish true drama from its false variants. He considers the impossibly difficult progression between one act and the next and the mysterious function of the soliloquy. The result, in Three Uses of the Knife, is an electrifying treatise on the playwright’s art that is also a strikingly original work of moral and aesthetic philosophy. 
Read more

About the author

David Mamet is a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and an Academy Award-nominated screenwriter, as well as a director, novelist, poet, and essayist. He has written the screenplays for more than twenty films, including Heist, Spartan, House of Games, The Spanish Prisoner, The Winslow Boy, Wag the Dog, and the Oscar-nominated The Verdict. His more than twenty plays include Oleanna, The Cryptogram, Speed-the-Plow, American Buffalo, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, and the Pulitzer Prizewinning Glengarry Glen Ross. Born in Chicago in 1947, Mamet has taught at the Yale School of Drama, New York University, and Goddard College, and is a founding member of the Atlantic Theater Company.
Read more
3.8
4 total
Loading...

Additional Information

Publisher
Vintage
Read more
Published on
Aug 14, 2013
Read more
Pages
96
Read more
ISBN
9780804151085
Read more
Features
Read more
Language
English
Read more
Genres
Literary Criticism / Drama
Performing Arts / Theater / History & Criticism
Philosophy / Aesthetics
Read more
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Eligible for Family Library

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
In the ancient Jewish practice of the kavannah (a meditation designed to focus one’s heart on its spiritual goal), Lawrence Kushner and David Mamet offer their own reactions to key verses from each week’s Torah portion, opening the biblical text to new layers of understanding.

Here is a fascinating glimpse into two great minds, as each author approaches the text from his unique perspective, each seeking an understanding of the Bible’s personalities and commandments, paradoxes and ambiguities. Kushner offers his words of Torah with a conversational enthusiasm that ranges from family dynamics to the Kabbalah; Mamet challenges the reader, often beginning his comment far afield—with Freud or the American judiciary—before returning to a text now wholly reinterpreted.

In the tradition of Israel as a people who wrestle with God, Kushner and Mamet grapple with the biblical text, succumbing neither to apologetics nor parochialism, asking questions without fear of the answers they may find. Over the course of a year of weekly readings, they comment on all aspects of the Bible: its richness of theme and language, its contradictions, its commandments, and its often unfathomable demands. If you are already familiar with the Bible, this book will draw you back to the text for a deeper look. If you have not yet explored the Bible in depth, Kushner and Mamet are guides of unparalleled wisdom and discernment. Five Cities of Refuge is easily accessible yet powerfully illuminating. Each week’s comments can be read in a few minutes, but they will give you something to think about all week long.

Lawrence Kushner teaches and writes as the Emanu-El Scholar at The Congregation Emanu-El of San Francisco. He has taught at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in New York City and served for twenty-eight years as rabbi of Congregation Beth El in Sudbury, Massachusetts. A frequent lecturer, he is also the author of more than a dozen books on Jewish spirituality and mysticism. He lives in San Francisco.

David Mamet is a Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright. He is the author of Glengarry Glen Ross, The Cryptogram, and Boston Marriage, among other plays. He has also published three novels and many screenplays, children's books, and essay collections.


From the Hardcover edition.
Anarchist [an/er-kist] n.
1. A person who opposes the authority of the state.
2. A person who causes disorder or upheaval.
3. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Mamet’s new play about one woman who is put away for life, and another who is committed to her rehabilitation.

“Students of Mamet won’t want to miss it; I was engaged and compelled throughout. Indeed, The Anarchist is a counterweight to the conventional dramatic tropes of family, love and death.” –Chris Jones, Chicago Tribune

“The Anarchist leaves no shortage of material for after-theater debate.” –Elysa Gardner, USA Today

“Being challenged to rethink your own perceptions and prejudices is a refreshing thrill of the sort that has otherwise been in short supply so far this season…it makes The Anarchist one of Mamet’s most trenchant and timely offerings ever.” –Matthew Murray, Talkin’ Broadway

“The viewer experiences Mamet’s signature rhythmic language. In what is like a ping-pong game, this battle of two women over freedom, power, money, religion—and the lack thereof, remains compelling during the eighty-five minutes it runs…Powerful, thought-provoking, and current.” –LA Splash Magazine

David Mamet is a playwright, essayist and screenwriter who directs for both the stage and film. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize and New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Glengarry Glen Ross. His plays include China Doll, Race, The Anarchist, American Buffalo, Speed-the-Plow, November, The Cryptogram, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, Lakeboat, The Water Engine, The Duck Variations, Reunion, The Blue Hour, The Shawl, Bobby gould in Hell, Edmond, Romance, The Old Neighborhood and his adaptation of The Voysey Inheritance.
©2018 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google|Location: United StatesLanguage: English (United States)
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.