Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Mass Market Paperback – Mar 1 1983
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“Albee can…be placed high among the important dramatists of the contemporary world theatre.”—New York Post“An irreplaceable experience…A crucial event in the birth of contemporary American theatre.”—Village Voice
About the Author
Edward Albee, the American dramatist, was born in 1928. He has written and directed some of the best plays in contemporary American theatre and three of his plays: A Delicate Balance, Seascape and Three Tall Women have received Pulitzer Prizes. His most famous play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Play. His other plays include The Zoo Story, The Death of Bessie Smith, The Sandbox, The American Dream, Tiny Alice, All Over, Listening, The Lady from Dubuque, The Man Who Had Three Arms, Finding the Sun, Fragments, Marriage Play and The Lorca Play.
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Top Customer Reviews
The characters are at odds with each other throughout the play, and yet it is difficult to takes sides with only one of them. They are all both likeable and dislikeable at the same time. George is a mean-spirited passive-aggressive with a huge chip on his shoulder, but it's impossible not to root for him as he joyfully attacks his wife, Martha, for her fondness of the bottle and various other sins. Nick's demeanor is just a tad holier-than-thou, but it is easily forgivable given the outrageous treatment he is forced to endure throughout the evening. Honey, his wife, is a ditz and a lush, but loveable in the same way as an Irish Setter. Any one of the four could easily carry the show, and together they create a powerful tension that keeps the play moving at a brisk pace.
It is easy to see why Albee's writing has earned him a Pulitzer Prize. What is surprising is that is was another, lesser-known play and not this one that he won it for.
A quick summary of the story without giving too much away: This is the story about an elderly couple who seem to hate each other with a passion. They're rude, loud, offensive, and insulting. When they invite a younger couple to their house, things quickly start to get out of control, while the elderly couple use their guests as sheilds and pawns in their brutal arguements and such. The story ends with a shocking resolution that will catch you off guard.
The dialogue in this play is so beautifully written. It reads like the way people actually talk. That is why I enjoyed it so much. It also enriched the characters that much more. Edward Albee did a magnificent job of weaving a tale that seems so realistic it's as if we are there at that house on that very night. There are no minor characters; everyone is important in a very significant way. It is refreshing to be able to get to know each character and the hopes, dreams, ambitions, and the conflicts that lie within.
I really enjoyed reading this wonderfully structured play. Much so that I have already read it at least seven times. It is a very easy read. And since it is mostly dialogue, it really doesn't take long to read. You could easily finish it in a day or two if you really put your heart to it. Even if you don't enjoy reading novels, maybe this is the solution. There is no lengthy descriptions of what color the characters' eyes are or what they're wearing. Just good old dialogue that will have you hooked from the very beginning. "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" is an outstanding play that will forever remain a true classic in American Literature.
Most recent customer reviews
I really enjoyed reading the play, the character development, the natural language and conversation, the contrast between the two couples as if shifts from beginning to end. Read morePublished on Sept. 15 2003
I read this play so the movie (which I haven't seen)would make some sense. I started reading it and didn't realy get into it until after Nick and Honey arrive at Geoarge and... Read morePublished on March 27 2002 by Brendan M
I saw a production of this play recently and so vehemently hated it that I want to warn the world about how terrible it is. Read morePublished on March 4 2002
This is the stuff real drama is made:the human soul.And we see four torn, ravaged soul caught in a maelstrom of bitter emotions caused by frustration,unrequited love,anger and... Read morePublished on Jan. 12 2002 by Ventura Angelo
Edward Albee's play "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" is one of those plays that is also a great read as a book. Read morePublished on Sept. 25 2001 by Michael J. Mazza
Edward Albee truly explores and humiliates the human fallacy of communication and insecurity in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Read morePublished on May 13 2001 by Ronnie Khoury
In his most famous play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Edward Albee uses a seemingly non-violent and peaceful setting, coupled with sarcastic and very violent dialogue, along... Read morePublished on May 6 2001 by jordan gottlieb
The play opens with a married couple, george and martha, who have just returned from a party at her fathers house, who happens to be the head of the college at which george is a... Read morePublished on May 6 2001 by jordan gottlieb