Strindberg: Biography by Michael Meyer
Called "that greatest genius of all modern dramatists" by Eugene O'Neill, Strindberg was one of the founders of the modern theater--a prolific author whose works prefigured those of Pinter, Beckett, and Ionesco. Yet, despite their admiration by such contemporaries as Ibsen, Chekhov, and George Bernard Shaw, Strindberg's works were misunderstood and rejected by his fellow Swedes, who throughout his life considered him a crank and a failure. In this definitive biography, Michael Meyer, the foremost translator of Strindberg's plays into English, presents a full and honest portrait of Strindberg as man and artist. Concentrating on his contribution to the theater, Meyer has sifted through Strindberg's voluminous autobiographical writings as well as published and unpublished letters to discover the source of his art and its meaning to both Strindberg and the theater. He also gives a sense of Strindberg's troubled life--his three tempestuous marriages, his exile, his often disputatious relations with other artists-- and sheds new light on the playwright's supposed misogyny, his bouts with madness, and his paranoia.