The theater of Terrence McNally : something about grace / Raymond-Jean Frontain
- Frontain, Raymond-Jean
- Madison : Fairleigh Dickinson University Press ; Lanham, Maryland : copublished by The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc., 
- Copyright Date:
- Physical Description:
- xi, 361 pages ; 24 cm
- Introduction: Something about grace : McNally's religious humanism -- Someone is out there : existential angst in And Things That Go Bump in the Night -- "I can't believe this whole night" : redemption by farce in The Ritz -- Long night's journey into day : Frankie and Johnny as sexual Eucharist -- The loneliness of the long-distance swimmer : Lips Together, Teeth Apart -- "Allow, accept, be" : McNally's engagement with Hindu spirituality in A Perfect Ganesh -- Communal survival and the dance of death in Love! Valour! Compassion! -- "All men are divine" : religious mystery and homosexual identity in Corpus Christi -- McNally on the cross : Dead Man Walking, Crucifixion, and A Man of No Importance -- Discovering the authentic self : Dedication and the salvific function of theater -- Sing for your supper, sing for your salvation : Golden Age, Master Class, and The Lisbon Traviata -- Conclusion: The music of forgiveness : The Visit and Mothers and Sons.
- "Terrence McNally's canon of plays, books for musicals, and opera libretti possesses such a breadth of subject matter and diversity of dramatic modes that critics have had difficulty assessing his accomplishment. This book is the first critical study to identify the four major stages of McNally's development in terms of his understanding of how theater helps the modern person trapped in a seemingly profane existence to find a gateway to the transcendent. Drawing upon such diverse religious thinkers as Martin Buber, Mircea Eliade, Ilia Delio and Carter Heyward, Raymond-Jean Frontain analyzes the evolution of McNally's understanding of grace, not as a gift bestowed by an all-powerful deity upon a desperate soul, but as the unwarranted -- and, thus, all the more unusual -- 'act of devotion' (McNally's phrase) that one person performs for another. By seeking to foment community, most importantly at the height of the AIDS pandemic, McNally's theater itself proves to be a channel of grace. McNally's greatest success is shown to be the creation of a theater of empathy and compassion in contradistinction to Artaud's 'theater of cruelty' and Albee's Americanization of the theater of the absurd."--Back cover.
- 9781683932154 and 1683932153
- Bibliography Note:
- Includes bibliographical references and index.
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