Sam Shepard

A Life


Author: John J. Winters

Publisher: Counterpoint Press

ISBN: 1619029847

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 448

View: 3181

"John Winters offers a master class in literary sleuthing, untangling the many lives and unearthing the origin story of America’s foremost Renaissance man of letters." —Kelly Horan, coauthor of Devotion and Defiance With more than fifty-five plays to his credit—including the 1979 Pulitzer Prize–winning Buried Child, an Oscar nod for his portrayal of Chuck Yeager in The Right Stuff, and an onscreen persona that’s been aptly summed up as “Gary Cooper in denim”—Sam Shepard’s impact on American theater and film ranks with the greatest playwrights and actors of the past half-century. Sam Shepard: A Life gets to the heart of Sam Shepard, presenting a compelling and comprehensive account of his life and work. In a new epilogue, added by the author after Shepard’s untimely death in July of 2017, John J. Winters offers a glimpse into the enigmatic author’s last days, when very few knew he was suffering from ALS. "An excellent biography . . . Mr. Winters is especially good on the backstage of one of Mr. Shepard’s most frequently revived works, True West . . . Mr. Winters has an interesting story to tell, and he recounts it ably, bringing us close to a figure who, he admits, avoids intimacy." —The Wall Street Journal "A new, thoroughly researched biography . . . Winters does indeed capture a personality more anxious and self-doubting than previous biographers have grasped." —The Washington Post "Meticulously presents the facts of Shepard’s complex life along with incisive descriptions and analyses of diverse productions of Shepard’s demanding and innovative plays . . . Winters portrays Shepard as a magnetic, enigmatic, and multitalented artist drawing on a deep well of loneliness and self-questioning, keen attunement to the zeitgeist, and penetrating insight into human nature." —Booklist (starred review)

The Cambridge Companion to Sam Shepard


Author: Matthew Roudané

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521777667

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 329

View: 8081

Few American playwrights have exerted as much influence on the contemporary stage as Sam Shepard. His plays are performed on and off Broadway and in all the major regional American theatres. They are also widely performed and studied in Europe, particularly in Britain, Germany and France, finding both a popular and scholarly audience. In this collection of seventeen original essays, American and European authors from different professional and academic backgrounds explore the various aspects of Shepard s career - his plays, poetry, music, fiction, acting, directing and film work. The volume covers the major plays, including Curse of the Starving Class, Buried Child, and True West, as well as other lesser known but vitally important works. A thorough chronology of Shepard s life and career, together with biographical chapters, a note from the legendary Joseph Chaikin, and an interview with the playwright, give a fascinating first-hand account of an exuberant and experimental personality.

Two Prospectors

The Letters of Sam Shepard and Johnny Dark


Author: Sam Shepard,Johnny Dark

Publisher: University of Texas Press

ISBN: 0292761961

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 399

View: 5578

Sam Shepard is arguably America’s finest working dramatist, as well as an accomplished screenwriter, actor, and director. Winner of a Pulitzer Prize, he has written more than forty-five plays, including True West, Fool for Love, and Buried Child. Shepard has also appeared in more than fifty films, beginning with Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven, and was nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in The Right Stuff. Despite the publicity his work and life have attracted, however, Shepard remains a strongly private man who has said many times that he will never write a memoir. But he has written intensively about his inner life and creative work to his former father-in-law and housemate, Johnny Dark, who has been Shepard’s closest friend, surrogate brother (they’re nearly the same age), and even artistic muse for forty-five years and counting. Two Prospectors gathers nearly forty years of correspondence and transcribed conversations between Shepard and Dark. In these gripping, sometimes gut-wrenching letters, the men open themselves to each other with amazing honesty. Shepard’s letters give us the deepest look we may ever get into his personal philosophy and creative process, while in Dark’s letters we discover insights into Shepard’s character that only an intimate friend could provide. The writers also reflect on the books and authors that stimulate their thinking, their relationships with women (including Shepard’s anguished decision to leave his wife and son—Dark’s stepdaughter and grandson—for actress Jessica Lange), personal struggles, and accumulating years. Illustrated with Dark’s candid, revealing photographs of Shepard and their mutual family across many years, as well as facsimiles of numerous letters, Two Prospectors is a compelling portrait of a complex friendship that has anchored both lives for decades, a friendship also poignantly captured in Treva Wurmfeld’s film, Shepard & Dark.

The Theatre of Sam Shepard

States of Crisis


Author: Stephen J. Bottoms

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521587914

Category: Drama

Page: 301

View: 6165

This comprehensive analysis traces Sam Shepard's career from his experimental one-act plays of the 1960s to the 1994 play Simpatico. Curse of the Starving Class, Buried Child, True West, Fool for Love and A Lie of the Mind are all examined in depth. Concentrating on his playwriting, this book charts Shepard's various developments and shifts of direction, and the changing contexts in which his work appeared. Engaging, informative, and insightful, The Theatre of Sam Shepard is the definitive source on the works of this innovative and original writer.

Sam Shepard


Author: Harold Bloom

Publisher: Infobase Publishing

ISBN: 1438116462


Page: 114

View: 8738

Sam Shepard is one of America's most prolific dramatists, as well as a screenplay writer, memoirist, and successful film actor. His irreverent, satirical, and nostalgic treatment of American popular culture has attracted a cult following as well as the re

Understanding Sam Shepard


Author: James A. Crank

Publisher: Univ of South Carolina Press

ISBN: 1611171873

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 152

View: 5052

Understanding Sam Shepard investigates the notoriously complex and confusing dramatic world of Sam Shepard, one of America’s most prolific, thoughtful, and challenging contemporary playwrights. During his nearly fifty-year career as a writer, actor, director, and producer, Shepard has consistently focused his work on the ever-changing American cultural landscape. James A. Crank’s comprehensive study of Shepard offers scholars and students of the dramatist a means of understanding Shephard’s frequent experimentation with language, setting, characters, and theme. Beginning with a brief biography of Shepard, Crank shows how experiences in Shepard’s life eventually resonate in his work by exploring the major themes, unique style, and history of Shepard’s productions. Focusing first on Shepard’s early plays, which showcase highly experimental, frenetic explorations of fractured worlds, Crank discusses how the techniques from these works evolve and translate into the major works in his “family trilogy”: Curse of the Starving Class, the Pulitzer Prize–winning Buried Child, and True West. Shepard often uses elements from his past—his relationship with his father, his struggle for control within the family, and the breakdown of the suburban American dream—as major starting points in his plays. Shepard is a recipient of a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, eleven Obie Awards, and a Chicago Tribune Literary Prize for Lifetime Achievement. Augmented with an extensive bibliography, Understanding Sam Shepard is an ideal point of entrance into complex and compelling dramas of this acclaimed playwright.

The Stage Life of Props


Author: Andrew Sofer

Publisher: University of Michigan Press

ISBN: 9780472068395

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 278

View: 1978

Fresh and provocative readings of familiar stage objects provide new ways of understanding theater, dramatic literature, and culture

Zu: Sam Shepard - "Buried Child"


Author: Alexandra Mohr

Publisher: GRIN Verlag

ISBN: 3638118010

Category: Literary Collections

Page: 18

View: 8733

Seminar paper from the year 2000 in the subject American Studies - Literature, grade: 2,0 (B), Humboldt-University of Berlin (American Culture Studies), course: The American Dream, 7 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: Sam Shepard is known as one of the most accomplished playwrights in the United States, he also gained celebrity as an actor in a couple of American movies. He has written more than 45 plays, different screenplays, and has received 11 Obie Awards, besides a Golden Palm Award and an Oscar nomination. For the 1979 published play Buried Child he received the Pulitzer Price in the same year. This play belongs to Shepard′s trilogy of family dramas, and is probably the one which marks the change of direction in his career to a more realistic style. Critics do recognize a lot of differences compared to older plays, which are seen as surrealistic plays, or plays, which critics catogorize as parts of the Theatre of Absurd, like, for example, Fool for Love. But reading Buried Child, the reader quickly realizes that the play may have started as a realistic play, but it turns out to be totally different. Step by step, Shepard creates a sarcastic play, which also could be seen as part of the Theatre of Absurd. The play is about a farmers family living near Illinois, in the middle of nowhere. On the surface the family seems to be normal, maybe just a bit frustrated. But in the background appears to be a secret, which connects the family in a very strange way, also every single member of the family tries to keep this secret. In a brilliant way, Shepard here combines the actual with the fictional. When the audience just starts to feel comfortable with the play, the plot changes immediately and disappoints their great expectations. The following essay is divided into three main parts. The first part will give an idea of Shepard′s use of autobiographical facts, the second focuses on the father-son conflict we often find in his plays. The last part ′The Buried Child′ will be a direct interpretation of the text.

Poetry Notebook



Author: Clive James

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

ISBN: 1447269152

Category: Literary Collections

Page: N.A

View: 1391

Clive James is one of our finest critics and best-loved cultural voices. He is also a prize-winning poet. Since he was first enthralled by the mysterious power of poetry, he has been a dedicated student. In fact, for him, poetry has been nothing less than the occupation of a lifetime, and in this book he presents a distillation of all he's learned about the art form that matters to him most. With his customary wit, delightfully lucid prose style and wide-ranging knowledge, James explains the difference between the innocuous stuff that often passes for poetry today and a real poem: the latter being a work of unity that insists on being heard entire and threatens never to leave the memory. A committed formalist and an astute commentator, he offers close and careful readings of individual poems and poets (from Shakespeare to Larkin, Keats to Pound), and in some case second readings or re-readings late in life - just to be sure he wasn't wrong the first time! Whether discussing technical details of metaphorical creativity or simply praising his five favourite collections of all time, he is never less than captivating.

Erlesenes Essen

literatur- und kulturwissenschaftliche Beiträge zu Hunger, Sattheit und Genuss : für Ulrich Halfmann


Author: Christiane Grewe-Volpp,Werner Reinhart

Publisher: Gunter Narr Verlag

ISBN: 9783823356554

Category: American literature

Page: 369

View: 1176

Sam Shepard V8


Author: Johan Callens

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135299064

Category: Art

Page: 116

View: 3892

These issues consist of the edited Proceedings of the Shepard conference, organized by the Belgian-Luxembourg American Studies Association and the Free University of Brussels (VUB), which took place in Brussels, 28-30 May 1993. It will be of interest to undergraduates and postgraduates, professors, critics, theater practitioners, writers and those with a keen interest in the fields of literature, theater studies and cultural studies.

The New Yorker Theater and Other Scenes from a Life at the Movies


Author: Toby Talbot

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231519826

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 400

View: 7159

The nation didn't know it, but 1960 would change American film forever, and the revolution would occur nowhere near a Hollywood set. With the opening of the New Yorker Theater, a cinema located at the heart of Manhattan's Upper West Side, cutting-edge films from around the world were screened for an eager audience, including the city's most influential producers, directors, critics, and writers. Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese, Susan Sontag, Andrew Sarris, and Pauline Kael, among many others, would make the New Yorker their home, trusting in the owners' impeccable taste and incorporating much of what they viewed into their work. In this irresistible memoir, Toby Talbot, co-owner and proud "matron" of the New Yorker Theater, reveals the story behind Manhattan's wild and wonderful affair with art-house film. With her husband Dan, Talbot showcased a range of eclectic films, introducing French New Wave and New German cinema, along with other groundbreaking genres and styles. As Vietnam protests and the struggle for civil rights raged outside, the Talbots also took the lead in distributing political films, such as Bernard Bertolucci's Before the Revolution, and documentaries, such as Shoah and Point of Order. Talbot enhances her stories with selections from the New Yorker's essential archives, including program notes by Jack Kerouac, Jules Feiffer, Peter Bogdanovich, Jonas Mekas, Jack Gelber, and Harold Humes. These artifacts testify to the deeply engaged and collaborative spirit behind each showing, and they illuminate the myriad and often entertaining aspects of theater operation. All in all, Talbot's tales capture the highs and lows of a thrilling era in filmmaking.

Sam Shepard


Author: Martin Tucker

Publisher: Crossroad Publishing Company


Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 179

View: 3881

Elusive and reclusive, he is combination playwright, rock star, and movie idol. Sam Shepard has moved - and confounded - millions with some of the most dynamic theater America has seen since the heyday of O'Neill, Odets, and Arthur Miller. This biographical-critical book is about Sam Shepard's plays. Although it does not claim a literal connection between the work and the life, it does suggest that Shepard's plays remain the truest source for discovery of his humanistic views and the important roles his family and friends have played in his life. Following an introduction and short biography of the early days, both in Duarte, California, and in the heady atmosphere of Greenwich Village in the early sixties, the book goes on to a consideration of Shepard's plays, succinctly drawing on biographical data to provide a comprehensive and transitional approach to his achievement. Recurring themes and images are shown to reverberate through the plays, signifying a stream of consciousness that reveals more than it seemingly tells. Among the plays discussed are La Turista, Mad Dog Blues, Geography of a Horse Dreamer, Curse of the Starving Class, True West, Fool for Love, A Lie of the Mind, and his latest work States of Shock. Through Martin Tucker's close reading of Shepard's plays we come to see the curve of the playwright's career, from the more complex to the more concrete; from the experimental to the conventional, but more finely shaded. Shepard has called himself the "ultimate foe of terminal stasis": this book helps to explain why.

Motel Chronicles


Author: Sam Shepard

Publisher: City Lights Publishers

ISBN: 0872861430

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 110

View: 4502

Motel Chronicles reveals the fast-moving and sometimes surprising world of the man behind the plays that have made Sam Shepard a live legend in the theater. Shepard chronicles his own life birth in Illinois, childhood memories of Guam, Pasadena and rural Southern California, adventures as ranch hand, waiter, rock musician, dramatist, and film actor. Scenes from this book form the basis of his play Superstitions, and of the film (directed by Wim Wenders) Paris, Texas, winner of the Golden Palm Award at the 1984 Cannes Film Festival.

Sam Shepard

a casebook


Author: Kimball King

Publisher: Scholarly Title


Category: Drama

Page: 176

View: 9356

A Broken Hallelujah: Rock and Roll, Redemption, and the Life of Leonard Cohen


Author: Liel Leibovitz

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393244202

Category: Music

Page: 256

View: 1377

Brings to life a passionate poet-turned-musician and what compels him and his work. Why is it that Leonard Cohen receives the sort of reverence we reserve for a precious few living artists? Why are his songs, three or four decades after their original release, suddenly gracing the charts, blockbuster movie sound tracks, and television singing competitions? And why is it that while most of his contemporaries are either long dead or engaged in uninspired nostalgia tours, Cohen is at the peak of his powers and popularity? These are the questions at the heart of A Broken Hallelujah, a meditation on the singer, his music, and the ideas and beliefs at its core. Granted extraordinary access to Cohen’s personal papers, Liel Leibovitz examines the intricacies of the man whose performing career began with a crippling bout of stage fright, yet who, only a few years later, tamed a rowdy crowd on the Isle of Wight, preventing further violence; the artist who had gone from a successful world tour and a movie star girlfriend to a long residency in a remote Zen retreat; and the rare spiritual seeker for whom the principles of traditional Judaism, the tenets of Zen Buddhism, and the iconography of Christianity all align. The portrait that emerges is that of an artist attuned to notions of justice, lust, longing, loneliness, and redemption, and possessing the sort of voice and vision commonly reserved only for the prophets. More than just an account of Cohen’s life, A Broken Hallelujah is an intimate look at the artist that is as emotionally astute as it is philosophically observant. Delving into the sources and meaning of Cohen’s work, Leibovitz beautifully illuminates what Cohen is telling us and why we listen so intensely.

Sam Shepard


Author: Don Shewey

Publisher: Da Capo


Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 269

View: 885

Sam Shepard's outlandish, nightmarish, yet lyrical plays—The Tooth of Crime, Buried Child, True West, Fool for Love, A Lie of the Mind, and dozens of others—have garnered him a Pulitzer Prize and a lasting reputation as one of America's greatest living playwrights. His charismatic performances in movies like Days of Heaven, The Right Stuff, Country, and Thunderheart—as well as his screenplay for Paris, Texas—have made him an indelible presence in American film. Rock 'n' roller, rancher, and rodeo prizewinner, he has toured with Bob Dylan, hung out with the Rolling Stones, collaborated with Patti Smith, and raised a family with Jessica Lange. Yet throughout he has remained an enigmatic figure. In this acclaimed biography, now fully updated, Don Shewey explores the life and works of this American visionary, illuminating Shepard's unique success in straddling the divide between serious artist and pop-culture hero.

Life: The Movie

How Entertainment Conquered Reality


Author: Neal Gabler

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307773256

Category: Social Science

Page: 320

View: 3422

The story of how our bottomless appetite for novelty, gossip, and melodrama has turned everything—news, politics, religion, high culture—into one vast public entertainment. Neal Gabler calls them "lifies," those blockbusters written in the medium of life that dominate the media and the national conversation for weeks, months, even years: the death of Princess Diana, the trial of O.J. Simpson, Kenneth Starr vs. William Jefferson Clinton. Real Life as Entertainment is hardly a new phenomenon, but the movies, and now the new information technologies, have so accelerated it that it is now the reigning popular art form. How this came to pass, and just what it means for our culture and our personal lives, is the subject of this witty, concerned, and sometimes eye-opening book. "A thoughtful, in places chilling, account of the way entertainment values have hollowed out American life." --The New York Times Book Review

An Improbable Life

My Sixty Years at Columbia and Other Adventures


Author: Michael I. Sovern

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231537050

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 312

View: 1472

Columbia University began the second half of the twentieth century in decline, bottoming out with the student riots of 1968. Yet by the close of the century, the institution had regained its stature as one of the greatest universities in the world. According to the New York Times, "If any one person is responsible for Columbia's recovery, it is surely Michael Sovern." In this memoir, Sovern, who served as the university's president from 1980 to 1993, recounts his sixty-year involvement with the institution after growing up in the South Bronx. He addresses key issues in academia, such as affordability, affirmative action, the relative rewards of teaching and research, lifetime tenure, and the role of government funding. Sovern also reports on his many off-campus adventures, including helping the victims of the Tuskegee syphilis experiment, stepping into the chairmanship of Sotheby's, responding to a strike by New York City's firemen, a police riot and threats to shut down the city's transit system, playing a role in the theater world as president of the Shubert Foundation, and chairing the Commission on Integrity in Government.