© 2014

American Playwriting and the Anti-Political Prejudice

Twentieth- and Twenty-First-Century Perspectives

  • Authors

Part of the Palgrave Studies in Theatre and Performance History book series (PSTPH)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 5-23
  3. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 25-35
  4. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 95-121
  5. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 123-139
  6. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 141-161
  7. Nelson Pressley
    Pages 163-166
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 167-193

About this book


Twenty years after Tony Kushner's influential Angels in America seemed to declare a revitalized potency for the popular political play, there is a "No Politics" prejudice undermining US production and writing. This book explores the largely unrecognized cultural patterns that discourage political playwriting on the contemporary American stage.


American drama political plays state of the nation plays America play politics stage writing

About the authors

Nelson Pressley recently received his PhD from the University of Maryland.

Bibliographic information


"American Playwriting and the Anti-Political Prejudice addresses a timely, even urgent question: what has happened to the tradition of socially engaged playwriting in the United States since its two high-water marks in the twentieth century? Something has changed - perhaps irrevocably - in the way our culture makes room for political debate on its stages, in the way playwrights theatricalize political life, embody committed thought and action, and measure the space between utopian ideals and harsher realities." - Marc Robinson, author of The American Play: 1787-2000