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J. B. Criticism

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J. B. was something of a sensation in its time, especially because of MacLeish's audacity and deftness in attempting to write verse drama for a modern audience. The play was published as a book months before it was ever performed, and so its first reviewers were readers, not members of an audience. Because MacLeish was well known as a poet, his play in verse received more critical attention in the major newspapers and magazines than it might have otherwise. The poet John Ciardi, in a review titled "Birth of a Classic," written for the Saturday Review of Literature, called the play "great poetry, great drama, and . . . great stagecraft." Other critics were more modest in their praise but were largely favorable. After its first production, at Yale University in 1958, the play was selected for the World's Fair at Brussels.

The substantially revised Broadway version of J. B. was widely...

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This section contains 721 words
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Buy the J. B. Study Guide
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J. B. from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.