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Our Town (1938)

af Thornton Wilder

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5,007672,145 (3.66)163
This beautiful new edition features an eye-opening Afterword written by Tappan Wilder that includes Thornton Wilder's unpublished notes and other illuminating photographs and documentary material. Our Town was first produced and published in 1938 to wide acclaim. This Pulitzer Prize-winning drama of life in the small village of Grover's Corners, an allegorical representation of all life, has become a classic. It is Thornton Wilder's most renowned and most frequently performed play.… (mere)
Nyligt tilføjet afprivat bibliotek, lblightsey, French-Inhaler, benteves, 914SUdrama, esrztk, chlldsh, lshinaver, uses, liblow
Efterladte bibliotekerCarl Sandburg
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Viser 1-5 af 67 (næste | vis alle)
Our Town was a major part of Ann Patchett’s book Tom Lake. That’s what prompted me to read Our Town. It’s very different to read a script than a book. Somewhat stilted but the meaning behind the dialogue is the point. I’d actually like to see the okay performed. ( )
  kayanelson | Nov 27, 2023 |
The dialog is sparse but also rich in meaning and texture. I can see why it has staying power. ( )
  charlie68 | Sep 26, 2023 |
I absolutely love this play, but seeing it performed again this summer was an emotional experience. It was the 25th anniversary of my Mom's death and she performed as the lead in high school. The play is a celebration of life, both its simple routines and its big moments. Seeing it and rereading it was incredibly moving. I can't imagine experiencing this play and not appreciating the beauty of life a bit more when you are done.

"I can’t.
I can’t go on. It goes so fast.
We don’t have time to look at one another.
I didn’t realize. All that was going on in life,
and we never noticed.
Take me back – up the hill – to my grave.

But first: Wait! One more look.
Good-by, Good-by, world.
Good-by, Grover’s Corners.
Mama and Papa.
Good-bye to clocks ticking.
And Mama’s sunflowers.
And food and coffee.
And new-ironed dresses and hot baths.
And sleeping and waking up.

Oh, earth, you’re too wonderful
for anybody to realize you.

Do any human beings ever realize life
while they live it? – every, every minute?" ( )
  bookworm12 | Jul 25, 2023 |
The third act reminded me of Lincoln in the Bardo. There is a vein of sentimentality that runs through Our Town that (I think) kind of obscures the larger point about how we are locked into our cultural framework, from which the only liberation is death. The second act makes a sort of radical point about marriage. And the staging was innovative for the time. I'm looking forward to seeing the 2002 adaptation with Paul Newman, waiting in my DVD.com queue. ( )
  jonbrammer | Jul 1, 2023 |
I said about The Crucible that it communicated, in the book, a frenzied action best of all plays I’ve read. I’d like to add an addendum: Thornton Wilder’s Our Town is the best play I’ve read. Ever.

Own Town is very straightforward in concept: It’s Americana. It’s the Normal Rockwell of plays, a small New Hampshire town around the turn of the 20th century, untroubled by the inconveniences of the modern day like telephones, automobiles, and television. No, there are no people of color in this play, but that’s a historical effect more than a racial one. Birmingham this isn’t.

Our Town is not very straightforward in presentation. It begins with no set and no curtain, a blank stage, the house lights up. The stage manager (a character, not the actual stage manager) brings out the props, signaling the play has begun. Immediately he breaks the fourth wall. Turning to the audience, his first line is “This play is called ‘Our Town’.” It continues like this, with the stage manager describing aspects of the town, Grover’s Corner, and it’s inhabitants, primarily two families but other minor characters appear as well, such as the church choir director and the town policeman.

As is explicitly said in the play, the first act is about daily life, the second act is about love and marriage, and you can guess what the third act is about. The third act is Thornton Wilder’s Tour de Force. He rips your heart out. Characters you like but didn’t know you care about will make you weep. Underneath it all, the dead have a curious, secret knowledge that is inherently unknowable during life. A newly-dead woman, faced with a brief glimpse of her old life is brought to tears and utters “I didn’t realize. So all that was going on and we never noticed.”

Thornton Wilder responds, “The saints and poets, maybe—they do some.”


Lines I loved:

- "People are meant to go through life two by two. 'taint natural to be lonesome."

- …I want you to try and remember what it was like to have been very young. And particularly the days when you were first in love; when you were like a person sleepwalking, and you didn’t quite see the street you were in, and didn’t quite hear everything that was said to you. You’re just a little bit crazy.

- We all know that something is eternal. And it ain't houses and it ain’t names, and it ain’t earth, and it ain’t even the stars… everybody knows in their bones that something is eternal, and that something has to do with human beings. All the greatest people ever lived have been telling us that for five thousand years and yet you’d be surprised how people are always losing hold of it.

- “Oh, earth, you’re too wonderful for anybody to realize you. Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it?—every, every minute?”
“No. (Pause) The saints and poets, maybe—they do some.”

- I never realized before how troubled and how... how in the dark live persons are.... From morning till night, that's all they are — troubled.
( )
  gideonslife | Jan 5, 2023 |
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Wilder, Thorntonprimær forfatteralle udgaverbekræftet
Margulies, DonaldForordmedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet

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This play is called "Our Town."
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Emily: Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it? - every, every minute?

Stage manager: No. (Pause) the saints and poets, maybe - they do some.
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This beautiful new edition features an eye-opening Afterword written by Tappan Wilder that includes Thornton Wilder's unpublished notes and other illuminating photographs and documentary material. Our Town was first produced and published in 1938 to wide acclaim. This Pulitzer Prize-winning drama of life in the small village of Grover's Corners, an allegorical representation of all life, has become a classic. It is Thornton Wilder's most renowned and most frequently performed play.

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