Literary Connections: making the right connections with literature
Arthur Miller
All My Sons
All My Sons and
A View from
the Bridge

Arthur Miller

Arthur Miller has been described as 'one of the creative giants of the 20th century'. His plays remain popular classroom texts, presenting characters and issues in ways that continue to make an impact on audiences and students.

The life
Miller's death in 2005 produced a predictably large number of tributes. Here are a few:
  • Touched by fire: If Arthur Miller was admired more in Britain than in the US it was because he made theatre matter, says Richard Eyre. His work inspired a generation of playwrights and still speaks to us today - The Guardian, 19 February 2005. Scroll to the end of this article for links to several other tributes and The Guardian obituary.
  • One of the greatest playwrights of the 20th century, his work explored the dilemmas of the American dream - Michael Ratcliffe, The Guardian, 12 February 2005
  • Arthur Miller: 1915-2005 - images from the life of the great playwright
  • Voice of America: Arthur Miller was one of the creative giants of the 20th century. His seminal plays marked him out as a writer of rare gifts while his colourful life - including his marriage to Marilyn Monroe - embodied the politics and passion of his age - Philip French, The Observer 13 February 2005
  • Death of a Salesman - Saturday July 30, 1949 - review of the first London production of the play from The Manchester Guardian
All My Sons
  • A View from the Bridge and All My Sons (Penguin Modern Classics).
  • Studying Arthur Miller's All My Sons: this guide from Andrew Moore's Universal Teacher site is aimed primarily at GCSE students but the outline and background should also be useful for AS.
  • Stage productions of All My Sons:
    • Playhouse, Liverpool, 2006: 'Miller stated that "evasion is the most developed technique most men have"': Guardian review.
    • Library Theatre, Manchester, 2004: 'Miller claimed this was the first play in which he realised his ambition of making an audience gasp. It still has the power to provoke a sharp intake of breath.' (Alfred Hickling in The Guardian.)
Death of a Salesman
  • Death of a Salesman is available in editions from Heinemann, a student edition with introduction and notes, and Penguin Modern Classics
  • Film versions now on DVD include 1966 version for TV by the Broadway Theater Archive, based on the Elia Kazan Broadway premiere of the play. Willie Loman is played by his originator, Lee J Cobb. It creaks a bit and looks dated, but that may be no bad thing - and it does give a feel for the stage play.
  • Death Of A Salesman was also filmed in 1985, starring Dustin Hoffman as Willy.
  • The human stain: Why do people insist that Death of a Salesman is universal? It's not, says David Mamet. It's Jewish: The Guardian, 7 May 2005