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Drama Criticism

Locating Plays in Collections

The following books shelved in the Reference section are excellent sources to locate individual plays that appear in collections. Check SouthernSearch to see if the library has the book in which the play is published.

Index to Plays in Periodicals
Contains author and title index. Each entry provides author's full name, dates, title of the play, number of acts, a brief description of the play and periodical citation.

Ottemiller's Index to Plays in Collections: an Author and Title Index to Plays Appearing in Collections Published between 1900 and 1985
Plays that appear in anthologies from 1900-1985 are indexed here, including translations of foreign plays. Author/title index.

Play Index 
Entries arranged under author, title, and subject in a single alphabet. Indexes plays published during five-year periods. Each entry contains a brief description of the play.

Three Centuries of English and American Plays, a Checklist. England: 1500-1800, United States; 1714-1830 -- Ref Z2014. D7 B45
Lists approximately 5,500 plays, either as separates or in collections. Includes known and unknown authors. Alphabetically arranged by author.

Locating Reviews of Plays

Drury's Guide to Best Plays 

Covers English language full-length plays. Summarizes the plot in a paragraph Alphabetical arrangement by author.

A Guide to Critical Reviews
The first part of the guide is devoted to reviews of American plays arranged alphabetically by playwright. The second part of the guide is devoted to reviews of modern British and continental plays produced on Broadway from 1909-1966.

New York Times Index 
Reviews appear in alphabetical order by title of play under "Theater". Good source if you know the date of the play.

New York Times' Theatre Reviews 
Reviews of New York productions from various daily newspapers.

Newsbank, Microfiche Room, Ground Floor
Includes reviews of performing arts, interviews and articles that have appeared in newspapers from over 450 U.S. cities prior to 1993. The full text of the article is available on microfiche. 

Reference Sources for Drama Criticism

American Drama Criticism: Interpretations 1890-1977
Lists interpretations of American plays in books and periodicals. Entries are arranged alphabetically by dramatist. The titles of the plays appear in alphabetical order under the dramatist's name.

American Plays and Musicals on Screen: 650 Stage Productions and Their Film and Television Adaptations                                                   Includes bibliographical references (p. 301-302) and indexes.

American Playwrights since 1945: A Guide to Scholarship, Criticism and Performance 
Includes bibliographic essays, production histories and critical sources on modern American playwrights.

British and Irish Dramatists Since World War II. Fourth Series

The Cambridge Guide to Theatre

Cambridge Guide to World Theatre 
Contains factual information on every aspect of drama. Includes information on playwrights.

The Columbia Encyclopedia of Modern Drama 

A Companion to Twentieth-century American Drama

Contemporary Dramatists  
Contains information on living dramatists of the English stage. Includes biography, a list of the dramatist's works, and a signed critical essay.

Critical Companion to William Shakespeare: A Literary Reference to His Life and Works                                                                                       Includes bibliographical references and index.

Critical Survey of Drama 
Each entry includes a biography of the dramatist, principal works, critical analysis and an annotated bibliography. Major dramatists from Marlowe on are included. Entries are arranged alphabetically by author. The final volume contains lengthy essays on various dramatic genres by country and time period.

Crowell's Handbook of Classical Drama 
Contains information on Greek and Roman drama as works of great literature.

The Crown Guided to the World's Great Plays
Contains stories, plots, history and criticism of great plays from ancient Greece to modern times.

Drama Criticism 
Contains biographical and critical information on the most widely studied dramatic works of the world's literature. Has cumulative author and title index as well as a nationality index.

Dramatic Criticism Index 
Index to criticism on twentieth century American and foreign playwrights. Each playwright has a general section followed by references to specific plays.

European Drama Criticism, 1900-1975
An index to criticism of classical and contemporary plays by European dramatists excluding Shakespeare. Arrangement is alphabetical by playwright.

Historical Dictionary of French Theater 

Historical Dictionary of German Theater

Historical Dictionary of Postmodernist Literature and Theater 

Latin American Dramatists. First Series

Major Modern Dramatists 
Covers the major, twentieth century dramatists of the world. Provides history and criticism of their works.

Masterpieces of 20th-century American Drama

Masterplots II. Drama Series
Entries for dramatic works of English language playwrights of the twentieth century contain a brief biography, summary of the plot, a discussion of the play and the dramatist's work and a critical essay.

McGraw Hill Encyclopedia of World Drama: an International Reference Work in Five Volumes 
Contains information on world dramatists, the literature of the theater and aspects of stagecraft and production around the world.

Medieval Drama

Modern Drama: A Checklist of Critical Literature on 20th century Plays
Critical articles that have appeared in books and journals. Arranged alphabetically by playwright.

Modern Drama Scholarship and Criticism, 1966-1980: an international biography
Lists international publications on world drama. This list is supplemented each year in the journal Modern Drama.

More Black American Playwrights: a Bibliography
Lists criticism of black playwrights and their works from periodicals and journals. 

Nineteenth Century British Dramatists

Notable Playwrights

Oxford Companion to the Theatre 
Provides information on dramatists from around the world and international theater companies. Brief biographies are also included.

The Oxford Dictionary of Plays 

Performing Arts Biographies Master Index
Provides more than 270,000 citations to over 100 biographical reference sources in the performing arts. A key to tile codes of works indexed is printed on the end sheets. Alphabetical arrangement.

Reader's Encyclopedia of World Drama
Contains signed essays on the history and development of the theater as well as information on plays and playwrights.

Renaissance Drama 

Renaissance Drama provides a comprehensive  account of the drama of early modern England produced for the professional theatre. It brings new insights by exploring the plays in their relation to the culture and society of the period.

Twentieth Century American Dramatists. Fifth Series 

Twentieth Century French Dramatists 

Western Drama Through the Ages: a student reference guide

This two-volume reference guide offers 45 easy-to-read essays that cover theater history in Europe and the Americas from 500 BCE to the present.