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Arthur Miller


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Arthur Asher Miller (October 17, 1915 – February 10, 2005) was an American playwright and essayist. He was a prominent figure in American theatre, writing dramas that include plays such as All My Sons (1947), Death of a Salesman (1949), The Crucible (1953) and A View from the Bridge (1955)

Arthur Miller's Childhood:
His father was a productive shop-keeper and clothing manufacturer, until the Great Depression dried up virtually all business opportunities. Yet, despite being faced with poverty, Miller made the best of his childhood. He was a very active young man, in love with such sports as football and baseball.

College Bound:
In 1934, Miller left the east coast to attend the University of Michigan. He was accepted into their school of journalism.
His experiences during the depression made him skeptical towards religion. Politically, he began leaning towards the "Left." And since the theater was the cutting edge way for socio-economic liberals to express their views, he decided to enter the Hopwood Drama competition.
His first play, No Villain, received an award from the University. It was an impressive beginning for the young playwright: he had never studied plays or playwriting, and he had written his script in just five days!

Broadway Bound:
After graduation, he continued writing plays. During World War II, his writing career gradually became more successful. In 1940 he crafted The Man Who Had All the Luck. It arrived on Broadway in 1944, but unfortunately it departed from Broadway four days later! In 1947, his first Broadway success, a powerful drama titled All My Sons, earned him critical and popular acclaim. From that point on, his work was in high demand.
Death of a Salesman, his most famous work, debuted in 1949. It earned him international recognition.

Major Works:
- All My Sons (1947)
- Death of a Salesman (1949)
- The Crucible (1953)
- A View from the Bridge (1955)
- After the Fall (1964)
- Broken Glass (1994)
- Resurrection Blues (2002)
- Finishing the Picture (2004)

Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe:

During the 1950s, Arthur Miller became the most recognized playwright in the world. His renown wasn’t simply because of his literary genius. In 1956 he married his second wife, Marilyn Monroe. From then on, he was in the limelight. Photographers hounded the famous couple at all hours. The tabloids were often cruel, puzzling over why the “world’s most beautiful woman” would marry such a “homely writer." A year after divorcing Marilyn Monroe in 1961 (a year before her death), Miller married his third wife, Inge Morath. They remained together until she passed away in 2002.

Controversial Playwright:

Since Miller was in the spotlight, he was a prime target for the House of Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC). In an age of anti-communism and McCarthyism, Miller’s political beliefs seemed threatening to some American politicians. In retrospect, this is quite amusing, considering the Soviet Union banned his plays.
In response to the hysteria of the time, he wrote one of his best plays, The Crucible. It is an insightful criticism of social and political paranoia set during the Salem Witch Trials.

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