Memory and Reconstruction of Identity in Arthur Miller's The Price


  • Lect. Ienas Talib Naseef College of Education for Women- University of Baghdad



human dynamism of identity, memory, post memory theory, The price, traumatic memory.


     Memory is an area of study in many academic domains, including sociology, cultural studies, psychiatry, psychology, and literature. It is a significant subject of discussion regarding the human dynamism of identity. As Miller thinks that the past is a misty spot and mirrors it consequently in his drama, he merges the past with the present. He shows how the past is embedded in the presence of his characters. Therefore, for Miller, past experiences constitute the present crises of his characters. Considering these experiences, this paper examines the themes of traumatic memory and identity within the scope of post-memory theory on the familial and social level in Arthur Miller's play The Price (1968). The play demonstrates a unique issue on family, memory, and identity, particularly picturing family as a site for memory, and a fundamental mechanism of transgenerational trauma transmission. It reveals the interweaving of traumatic family memory in the production of individual identity.



Artaud, Antonin. (1974). The Theatre and its Double. London: Calder and Boyars Ltd.

Balakian, Janet N. (2003). The Holocaust, the Depression, and McCarthyism: Miller in the Sixties. The Cambridge Companion to Arthur Miller. Ed. Christopher Bigsby. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Bigsby, C. W. E. (1989). A Critical Introduction to Twentieth-Century American Drama. Vol. 2. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Centola D, Macy M. (2007). Complex contagions and the weakness of long ties. Am. J. Sociol. 113:702–34

Clurman, H. (1998). "Late theatrical works: theatre: Review of Happy Days". The critical response to Samuel Beckett. (Edited by Cathleen Culotta Andonian). Westport, CT. Greenwood Press.

Cooke, Richard P. (1986). The Theater. The Wall Street Journal, 9 February 1968.

Favorini, A. (2010). Memory in Theater: The Scene is Memory, Memory Process: Neuroscientific and Humanistic Perspectives, (Eds: Suzanne Nalbantian, Paul M. Matthews, James L. McClelland), MIT Press, Cambridge.

Frederick, Lumley. (1967). New Trends in 20th Century Drama. A Survey Since Ibsen and Shaw, London: Barrie and Rockliff.

Freeman, M. (1993). Rewriting the Self: History, Memory, Narrative, Routledge, New York.

Frow, J. (2007). From ‘Toute la mémoire du monde: Repetition and Forgetting, Theories of

Memory: A Reader, (Ed: Michael Rossington and Anne Whitehead), Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

Hayman, Ronald. (1970). Contemporary Playwright: Arthur Miller. London Heinemann.

Kozdon, Sabine. (2005). Memory in Samuel Beckett's Plays. A Psychological Approach. New Brunswick (USA), London (UK): Transaction Publishers.

Kris, Ernst. (1956). The Personal Myth. A Problem in Psychoanalytic Technique. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. Vol. 4. Issue 4. August 1956.

Malkin J.R. (1999). Memory- Theatre and Postmodern Drama. US: University of Michigan Press.

Mertens Mahlu. (2014). Mnemonic Dramaturgy in Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie. Letterkunde: Nederlands - Engels. Print.

Meserve, Walter J. (1965). An Outline History of American Drama. Littlefield, Adams & Co.

Miller Arthur. (2008). Arthur Miller's collected plays: with an introduction. The University of Michigan: Viking Press.

Moss, Leonard. (1980). Arthur Miller. Boston: Twayne Publishers.

Maude, Ulrika (2006). "whole body like gone": Beckett and Technology‖. Journal of Beckett Studies, 16: 127-138.

Nelson, Benjamin. (1970). Arthur Miller, Portrait of a Playwright. New York: David McKay Co.

Richardson, Tanya. (2008). Kaleidoscopic Odessa: History and Place in Contemporary Ukraine. University of Toronto Press.

Steven R. Centola ed., Arthur Miller, Echoes Down the Corridor, New York: N.C., 1956, p.299

Taylor, Stephanie. (2010). Narratives of Space and Place. New York: Routledge Press.

Williams, Raymond (1966). Modern Tragedy. Stanford: Stanford University Press.






west languages

How to Cite

Ienas Talib Naseef, L. (2023). Memory and Reconstruction of Identity in Arthur Miller’s The Price. Lark, 15(2), 902-876.