Clifford Odets Discussion Topics

Discussion Topics

(Masterpieces of American Literature)

In an interview, Clifford Odets said that the secret to writing plays was less about knowing how to write than knowing how to connect with oneself. In what ways do you think Odets connects with himself in the plays you have read?

What brought the Great Depression of the 1930’s to an end?

Anti-Semitism was rife during the 1930’s. To what extent is this reflected in the plays you have read by Odets?

To what extent do you think young, aspiring playwrights today can find productive venues in which to work, as Odets did in the Group Theatre?

Do the plays you have read by Odets tell you much about the status of women?

Odets admits that he was writing about social classes rather than individuals. Do you think he did this at the expense of effective characterization?