The son of a traveling salesman and a clergyman's daughter, he was born in Columbus, Mississippi, and lived in St. Louis from age 12 When I was young, I worked in St. Louis and lived in an apartment two blocks from where Williams had lived, thus my extra keen interest in his work. He attended several colleges, and graduated from the University of Iowa at age 27.
He won recognition by the Group Theatre for his one act plays (1939). Wider success followed with The Glass Menagerie (1944) and mounted with Summer and Smoke (1948), Pulitzer Prize winning A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), and Pulitzer Prize-winning Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955). His plays, which also included Suddenly, Last Summer 1958, Sweet Bird of Youth (1959), and The Night of the Iguana (1961), describe a world of repressed sexuality and violence thinly veiled by gentility. Thus, he is regarded as a clear-sighted chronicler of fragile illusions. Streetcar is a play in three acts.
It concerns the mental and moral disintegration and ultimate ruin of Blanche DuBois, a former Southern belle. Her neurotic, genteel pretensions are no match for the harsh realities symbolized by her brutish brother-in-law, Stanley Kowalski. Our book's designer, Gabriel Rummonds, gave us a chaste edition and classic Monotype New Times Roman typographic format. The composition of the text was perfomed by Mackenzie-Harris of San Francisco. For the printing of the text and the engraved plates we are are indebted to Wild Carrot Letterpress of Hadley, Massachusetts.The caricaturist illustrations were fashioned by Al Hirshfield, who clearly captured the tensions, the surface appearance and the inner psyche of the play's characters. Hirshfield made six two-color illustrations, each bathed in glowing color but left with one area in stark white to reveal, as with a spotlight, the symbolic crux of a scene. He also made, significantly for the book's owners, a four-color lithograph for the frontispiece, printed by George J. Goodstadt of New York on Rives paper. The paper for the letterpress was especially made of a hundred pound soft-white wove stock by the Mohawk Mills in Cahoes, New York. The binding was performed by Robert A. Burlen & Sons in Hingham, Massachusetts.
It consists of a spine made of fine aniline leather, and covers of a cloth imported from Italy by Clarence House Imports of New York and designed by Kazumi Oshida in a Checquered Lady pattern hand-printed in 13 colors. This is number 1880 of 2000 copies, and is signed by Al Hirshfield.
The offer includes the essential four page Limited Editions Club Monthly Letter. This is a must have title for serious lovers of American literature and theater. It is a gorgeous book with the standard genius of Al Hirshfield drawings. Thank you for reading this presentation, and good luck with your searches. Feel free to contact me with any questions.
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