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February 15, 2005 - Image 9

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2005-02-15

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ARTHUR MILLER, PLAYWRIGHT AND ACTIVIST ... PAGE 2B
THOSE WHO KNEW MILLER BEST REMEMBER HIM ... PAGE 3B
A SAMPLING OF MILLER'S OTHER WORKS, FROM NEWS ARTICLES TO PERSONAL MANUSCRIPTS ... PAGE 4B
Q it igaul uiI

Second Printing

One-hundred-fourteen years ofeditorial freedom

Tuesday, February 15,.2005

www.michigandaily.com Ann Arbor, Michigan 02005 The Michigan Daily

ARTHUR MILLER, CLASS OF

'38

ra

Acclaimed alum dies at 89

By Jennifer M. Misthal
Daily Staff Reporter
Arthur Miller, one of the University's most distii-
guished alumni and a leading force in American theater,
died in his Roxbury, Conn. home Thursday night at age
89. The Associated Press reported heart failure as the
cause of his death.
The prolific playwright was born Oct. 17, 1915 to a
prominent Polish-Jewish family in Harlem. He is best
known for writing "All My Sons," "Death of a Sales-
man" - which earned him a Pulitzer Prize in 1949
- and "The Crucible."
Before he made his Broadway premiere in 1944, he

developed his writing skills as a University student
from 1934 to 1938. Miller found the University allur-
ing because of its Hopwood Awards - cash prizes
given to students for creative-writing. The awards
were established in 1931 in memory of dramatist
Avery Hopwood, also a University alum.
"This place seemed, because of the Hopwood Award,
to be taking writing seriously," Miller said during a visit
to Ann Arbor last April.
When financial constraints kept him in Ann Arbor
one spring break, Miller found himself with enough free
time to write a play, he recalled in his 1987 autobiogra-
phy, "Timebends: A Life."
See ALUM, Page 3B
Soaring
from 'U' to
immortality
By Evan McGarvey
and Adam Rottenberg
Daily Arts Editors

Arthur Miller, who gained national renown for
his twin plays criticizing McCarthy-era America,
"The Crucible" and "Death of a Salesman," died
Thursday. These works exposed the tenuous bonds
between government and private life. His career
spanned six decades, and he reached an unparal-
leled level of fame among American playwrights.
His role in the House of Un-American Activi-
ties Committee hearings brought a new face to
Cold War paranoia. Additionally, Miller became
entrenched in the public consciousness through
his much-publicized and tumultuous marriage to
Marilyn Monroe.
Miller lived a relatively secure childhood in
Harlem, N.Y. However, the Great Depression crip-
pled his father's coat business and forced the fam-
ily to move from Harlem to Brooklyn in 1929.
After dropping out of City College of New York
in 1932, Miller attended the University and began
his writing career. He found success early in Ann
Arbor, winning two Hopwood awards for drama
in 1936. He developed an affinity for the works
of the Norwegian dramatist Henrik Ibsen early in
his writing career. Ibsen's shift in focus from the
traditional aristocratic dramatic settings toward
domestic, intimate locations reverberated through
Miller's own work: One of his most successful
See PLAYWRIGHT, Page 3B

COURTESY OF BENTLEY HISTORICAL LIBRARY
Arthur Miller died Thursday night at the age of 89. The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright's most famous fictional
creation, Willy Loman in "Death of a Salesman," came to symbolize the American dream gone awry.

AP PHOTO
Actress Marilyn Monroe and Arthur Miller embrace at his
Connecticut home on their wedding day, June 29, 1956.

Theater
to preserve
Miller s
presence
By Karl Stampfl
Daily Staff Reporter
With a single postcard, Arthur Miller
ensured his legacy at the University would
endure. Penned by Miller in 2000, the post-
card granted his alma mater the rights to name
a theater after him which, when completed,
will be the only theater in the world bearing
Miller's name.
Since 1997, University administrators
wished to commemorate Miller's love for the
stage by constructing a theater in his honor.
Rvn aftr fi.. aar- of nannin4 difin-lti

'U,' students remember
playwright, mourn loss

By Jameel Naqvi
and Melissa Runstrom
Daily Staff Reporters

Arthur Miller's legacy lives on through
his impact on the University community.
His life and work influenced many involved
in theater at his alma mater.
"We mourn the death of Arthur Miller,
one of the nation's most celebrated play-
wrights and a loyal alumnus whose affec-
tion for the University endured for his
lifetime," University President Mary Sue
Coleman said yesterday.
"Arthur Miller expressed his genius in an
exquisite ability to communicate the beau-
ty and the sadness of ordinary people and
everyday life. We are proud that Michigan
played a part in his life and grateful for the
many ways this extraordinary man shared
himself with us."
Miller's death was felt acutely by aca-
demics who studied and taught his work.

a parable set in 17th-century Salem, Mass.
- is not confined to the virulent anti-Com-
munist historical context in which it was
written. Bornstein recounted a visit Miller
made to China, where his audience was
shocked to learn "The Crucible" was not
about life under a Communist dictatorship.
"He transcended time," he said. "He
could create these ... characters that people
could identify with."
The best known of these characters is Willy
Loman, the down-on-his-luck salesman from
Miller's Pulitzer Prize-winning play.
"Willy Loman is one of the great char-
acters of American literature," Bornstein
said. "I think ... 'Death of a Salesman' just
spoke to our society and spoke to the lone-
liness you can have in life."
Bornstein used to teach Miller's most
famous play, but in recent years he has
taught "Incident in Vichy" - Miller's only
play that directly addresses Jewish con-
cerns - as part of his course on Jewish-

Arthur MillAr snnke with visiting adlunct Prof. Mark Lamos at the Lydia Mendelssohn

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