Orpheus Descending Essay

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In the following essay excerpt, Traubitz examines the complexity of myth in Williams's Orpheus Descending.

Tennessee Williams's first professionally produced play, Battle of Angels (1940), failed during its Boston tryouts. However, the play did not die. Williams continued to rewrite, to add, to modify and in March, 1957, with the great successes of Glass Menagerie (1945), Streetcar Named Desire (1947), and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955) behind him, he committed Battle of Angels, now titled Orpheus Descending, to another Broadway production. "I honestly believe," Williams wrote, "that it is finally finished. About 75 percent of it is new writing, but what is much more important, I believe that I have now finally managed to say in it what I wanted to say . . ." Few plays have been so long meditated and so staunchly believed in by their creators, yet after seventeen years of perpetual revising by America's most successful playwright and one of...

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This section contains 3,069 words
(approx. 8 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Orpheus Descending Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Orpheus Descending from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.