Speed-the-Plow Essay

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In this essay, Petrusso discusses the complicated role of Karen in Speed-the-Plow, particularly the manner in which she exemplifies the problematic nature of female characters in Mamet's plays.

Many critics have noted that David Mamet does not write strong female characters. Indeed, many of his best plays, including American Buffalo and the Pulitzer Prize-winning Glengarry Glen Ross, do not feature women at all. One critic, the Nation' s Moira Hudson, writing on the original New York production of Speed-the-Plow, observed: "Mamet's parts for women have never been the equal of his parts for men: Women in his plays always seem to function more as plot elements, as sources of complications than as rounded, living characters." Many reviewers of the play have agreed that the character of Karen works in this fashion but are divided over the merits of drawing her as such. Critics such as Hudson find...

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This section contains 1,768 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Speed-the-Plow Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Speed-the-Plow from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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