Things Arthur Miller is Best Known For: Facts About Arthur Miller

Looking at the things Arthur Miller is best known for: facts about Arthur Miller is like digging for the personality of the great literary figure and the many accomplishments he had achieved during his life and prime. English language is known to have had a log list of writers, dramatists, poets, novelists, essayists, to name but a few. This list is still running on.

Particularly interested in Arthur Miller, we shall be checking out on his background, short biography, and certainly, the many major works he is popular for across the world. The name in itself, it cannot be denied, rings a bell more loudly in the ears of Literature students universally.

The ones who might not really know him are those who have by virtue of their love for quotes and ageless wisdom come across some of his quotes in the course of reading other philosophical books or rather surfing the internet.

Biographical Sketch of Arthur Miller

Apart from the fact that he was a prolific writer, Miller was often in the public eye during the mid and late periods of his life. During this time, he received a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, testified before the House Un-American Activities Committee, and married Marilyn Monroe.

Born in October 17, 1915 and died in February 10, 2005  particularly around Harlem, in the New York City borough of Manhattan, Arthur Miller was an American playwright, essayist and screenwriter in the 20th-century American theater. He was the second of three children of Augusta (Barnett) and Isidore Miller.

Throughout his life, Miller had several challenging moments such as working at several menial jobs to pay for his college tuition at the University of Michigan after graduating in 1932 from Abraham Lincoln High School. Or after graduation in 1936, he worked as a psychiatric aide and copywriter before accepting faculty posts at New York University and University of New Hampshire.

Miller published an account of his early years under the title, A Boy Grew in Brooklyn.

With vigor and interest in learning about the life and times of great English literary icons in human history, it is time you looked into the things Arthur Miller is best known for: facts about Arthur Miller as highlighted below:

  • Miller’s First Book: No Villain

Written in 1936 while Miller was still a student at the University of Michigan, No Villain is about a man who, because of an industrial strike, is in danger of losing everything. This is a theme that Arthur Miller would return to in his later work, such as Death of a SalesmanNo Villain was written in six days for a competition, which Miller duly won. The play was never performed in Miller’s own lifetime; its world premiere took place in London in December 2015, in the centenary year of Miller’s birth.

  • Controversy and “A View from the Bridge”

In 1955, Miller wrote “A View from the Bridge,” a play that explores themes of obsession, masculinity, and immigration. The play received mixed reviews initially but has since become a classic in American theater. Interestingly, its original version was considered too controversial and had to be revised before it could be produced.

  • Miller’s Marriage to Monroe

Miller and Monroe had initially met in 1951 and had a brief affair, but in June 1956 Miller left his first wife and promptly married Monroe. He wrote the script for The Misfits, which was released in 1961 and starred his wife. During the production of the film their marriage fell apart.

Monroe was dead a year later. The film was something of a poison chalice for one of its other stars, too: Clark Gable, who played the male lead, suffered a heart attack two days after completing the film, and died ten days later. The Hollywood connections don’t end there: Miller’s son-in-law is the actor Daniel Day-Lewis.

  • Miller’s Controversial Essay: Tragedy and the Common Man

In response to negative reviews which his play Death of a Salesman received, Miller wrote ‘Tragedy and the Common Man’ (1949), in which he argued that modern tragedy in the theatre should not concern kings and queens but ordinary people and their ordinary lives.

  • Hostile Reviews of Miller’s Play

Despite its status as a twentieth-century classic of American theatre, and one of Miller’s best-known plays, the original run of The Crucible was in fact a critical flop when it premiered in January 1953. Even Miller didn’t like it. It was only the following year, when a more appropriate production of the play was put on, that it became a success.

The play, of course, takes as its focus the 1692 Salem Witch Trials, which are used allegorically to comment on the McCarthy anti-Communist ‘witch hunts’ in the US in the 1950s. (The Crucible proved oddly prescient of Miller’s own experience with the House Un-American Activities Committee: in 1956 he would fall foul of the Committee when he refused to identify the other people who had been present at meetings he had attended.) Miller’s original title for the play was Those Unfamiliar Spirits.

  • Political Activism and “The Price”

Throughout his life, Arthur Miller remained politically active and used his writing to address social issues. In 1968, he wrote “The Price,” a play that delves into themes of family dynamics and personal sacrifice. Miller’s own experiences during the Great Depression and witnessing the impact of capitalism on ordinary people influenced the play’s narrative.

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