Nathan, George Jean

Nathan, George Jean
   Born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, the son of wealthy parents, he graduated from Cornell University in 1904, then spent a year studying at the University of Bologna. As a reporter for the New York Herald, he published his first theatre reviews in 1906. After stints reviewing for Outing and The Bohemian, Nathan became drama critic of The Smart Set in 1909, working closely with H. L. Mencken. They coedited the publication for a decade, from 1914-1924, and cofounded The American Mercury, for which Nathan wrote dramatic criticism until 1932. Nathan and Mencken also wrote two unsuccessful plays, The Artist (1912) and Heliogabulus (1920), but more importantly Nathan championed modernist theatre in his writings, emphasizing the significance of the plays of Henrik Ibsen, George Bernard Shaw, and August Strindberg. He assailed the quality of American theatre prior to the emergence of Eugene O'Neill, whose plays Nathan actively promoted.
   In 1932, Nathan founded The American Spectator with the aid of O'Neill and others, and he edited it until 1935, after which he wrote criticism for an array of publications, including Puck, Judge, Vanity Fair, The Saturday Review of Literature, Newsweek, THEATRE ARTS, and Esquire. Nathan's many books, some of which collected his criticisms, include Mr. George Jean Nathan Presents (1917), The Popular Theatre (1918), Comedians All (1919), The Theatre, The Drama, The Girls (1921), The Critic and the Drama (1922), The Testament of the Critic (1931), Since Ibsen (1933), The Theatre of the Moment (1936), and Encyclopedia of the Theatre (1940). Beginning in 1943, he published an annual, The Theatre Book of the Year, which ended with his death. Nathan married actress Julie Haydon* in 1955 and endowed an annual George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism. After World War II, his influence declined.

The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. .

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  • NATHAN, GEORGE JEAN — (1882–1958), U.S. drama critic and editor. Born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Nathan became the foremost American critic of his time, and took the lead in freeing the American theater of the stagy and melodramatic trappings of the belasco period. He… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Nathan,George Jean — Nathan, George Jean. 1882 1958. American writer and editor who founded and edited (1924 1930) the American Mercury with H.L. Mencken and was a widely influential drama critic. * * * …   Universalium

  • Nathan, George Jean — ▪ American writer born Feb. 14, 1882, Fort Wayne, Ind., U.S. died April 8, 1958, New York City       American author, editor, and drama critic, who is credited with raising the standards of play producers and playgoers alike.       Nathan… …   Universalium

  • Nathan, George Jean — (1882–1958)    US drama critic. Witty, erudite and often scathing, Indiana born Nathan was the foremost American drama critic of his time, and co editor with H.L. Mencken of The American Mercury. He published an encyclopaedia of the theatre… …   Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament

  • George Jean Nathan — (* 14. Februar 1882 in Fort Wayne, Indiana; † 8. April 1958 in New York) war ein amerikanischer Theaterkritiker, Schriftsteller und Redakteur. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 1.1 Jugend 1.2 Späteres Leben …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • George Jean Nathan — (February 14 1882 ndash; April 8 1958) was an American drama critic and editor.Early lifeNathan was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He graduated from Cornell University in 1904, where he was a member of the Quill and Dagger society.Drama critic… …   Wikipedia

  • Nathan (surname) — Nathan is a surname derived from Hebrew נתן meaning Given (standard Hebrew Natan, Yiddish Nussen or Nosson, Tiberian Hebrew Nāṯān). People with this surname Abie Nathan (1927–2008), Israeli humanist and peace activist Baron Nathan, a title in the …   Wikipedia

  • Nathan Jarman — Personal information Full name Nathan George Jarman Date of birth 19 September 1986 ( …   Wikipedia

  • Nathan — (hebr. er hat gegeben ) ist eine Kurzform des männlichen Vornamens Nathanael. Der Zusatz el leitet sich von El für Gott ab (vgl. Nathanja) und bedeutet Der HERR (Gott) hat gegeben . Nathan (Natan) war der alttestamentliche Prophet in der Bibel,… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Nathan — Nathan1 [nā′thən] n. [Heb nāthān, lit., he has given] 1. a masculine name: dim. Nat, Nate 2. Bible a prophet who rebuked David for the death of Uriah: 2 Sam. 12:1 14 Nathan2 [nā′thən] George Jean 1882 1958; U.S. drama critic & editor …   English World dictionary

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