Beautiful New York

A Celebration of the City

The Top 100 Greatest New Yorkers — #27

Arthur Miller (1915 – 2005)


Arguably the single greatest playwright America has yet produced, Arthur Miller was born and grew up in Harlem, relocating to Brooklyn with his parents after the stock market crash of 1929. His experience of this dark time in American history forever affected his outlook and his writing, often indicting the American Dream and the characters who don’t examine it sufficiently closely. His New York-set plays include After the Fall, Broken Glass, Death of a Salesman, A Memory of Two Mondays, The Price, and A View from the Bridge. His most produced play The Crucible has been revived on Broadway five times since its premier in 1953. The anti-HUAC conscience of the mid-20th century, Miller was as famous for his personal relationships with frequent collaborator Elia Kazan and wife Marilyn Monroe as for his writing. In his career, he won four Tony Awards (including one for Life Achievement), two New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards, the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the Kennedy Center Honor, the Jerusalem Prize, and the Dorothy and Lillian Gish Prize. At his alma mater where he studied journalism and English, he has given his name to the Arthur Miller Award for Dramatic Writing and the Arthur Miller Theatre.


1 Comment

  1. I have always considered it to be well nigh criminal that he was never awarded the Nobel Prize for Playwrights. What a courageous man. He wrote The Crucible at the height of the McCarthy/HUAC era. The members of that committee showed America’s greatest playwright no respect.

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