needs more than anything is an audience. Forgive my ex-cathedra
utterance, and thanks for your interest.
Sincerely, Maxwell Anderson
Quinn ( 1875-1960), in the English Department at the University of Pennsylvania
from 1895 until retirement in 1945, was among the pioneering scholars in the field of
American literature and published a number of historical studies, among them a survey
of American Fiction ( 1936) and a biography of
Poe ( 1941). But his main interest was in
the drama and his most ambitious work A History of the American Drama, the first
volume of which, coming to the Civil War, appeared in 1923. He devoted two volumes
to the period from the Civil War to the present ( 1927) and, though the work must have
been substantially complete before the present letter arrived, Quinn made use of its
biographical information in his discussion of
Anderson ( 2: 233-36).
White Desert was not produced again and has not been published.
The following September Longmans, Green published the acting script of
Saturday's Children, unrevised.
Frederick H. Koch ( 1877-1944), a leader of the regional drama movement at
the universities of North Dakota and (after 1918) North Carolina, was at North
Dakota during Anderson's last two years there, 1909-1911. At North Dakota Koch,
always an inspirational teacher, focused on acting and play production and developed
his playwriting courses after moving to North Carolina, where Paul Green and Thomas
Wolfe were among his students.
The one-act plays have not come to light, and Anderson omits his first full-length
play, Benvenuto ( 1922; Catalogue, pp. 64-65). For Henry David Gray, see Appendix I,
no. 5 and n. 3 there; and Chronology, 1913-14 and September 20, 1919.
You Who Have Dreams ( 1925). In the margin of the original Quinn marked this
and the remaining sentences of the letter but did not use them when he discussed Anderson's verse plays in the second edition of his history ( 1936; 2: 266-71).
26. TO BARRETT H. CLARK
April 5, 1929
Dear Mr. Clark--
I'll be in New City for a few weeks beginning next Monday. Our
address in town is 323 W. 112th St. The telephone is Monument 3130.
I hope you won't think me discourteous if I am niggardly of
information about myself. This modern craze for biographical
information leaves me cold for many reasons. For one thing it's always
inaccurate; for another it's never possible to be sure that it's relevant.
For another it's so bound up with publicity and other varieties of
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Dramatist in America:Letters of Maxwell Anderson, 1912-1958.
Contributors: Laurence G. Avery - Editor, Maxwell Anderson - Author.
Publisher: University of North Carolina Press.
Place of publication: Chapel Hill, NC.
Publication year: 1977.
Page number: 30.
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