Arthur Asher Miller (October 17, 1915 – February 10, 2005) was an American playwright and essayist. Born on October 17, 1915, in Harlem, Arthur was the second of three children of Isidore and Augusta Miller. He was often in the public eye, during the late 1940s, 1950s and early 1960s. During this period he also testified before the House Un-American Activities Committee, received Pulitzer Prize for Drama, and was married to Marilyn Monroe.
He was a far-famed and an important figure in the American theatre, writing dramas that include plays such as All my sons (1947), Death of a Salesman (1949), The Crucible (1953) and A view from the bridge (one-act, 1955; revised two-act, 1956), as well as the film The Misfits (1961).
In 2002, he received the Prince of Asturias Award and in 2003 the Jerusalem Prize.
In order to help his family, during his teen ages, Miller delivered bread every morning before school. In 1932, he graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School, yet he had to pay for his college tuition so he worked at several menial jobs.
Miller started his studies at the University of Michigan, from where he graduated in journalism and worked as a reporter and night editor for the student paper, the Michigan Daily. During this time, he wrote his first play, No Villain. Miller switched his major to English, and subsequently won the Avery Hopwood Award for No Villain. With this award Miller became renowned subsequently, he begun to consider that he could have a career as a playwright.
Miller decided to enroll in a playwriting seminar where he met Kenneth Rowe, a very influential professor who instructed him in his early forays into playwriting.
Miller wrote Honors at Down, in 1937, with which he received the Avery Hopwood Award.
After graduation, in 1938he he joined the Federal Theater Project. However, in 1939, the project closed due to some worries about possible Communist infiltration. Yet, Miller’s will to work didn’t stop. He began working in the Brooklyn Navy Yard and also he continued to write radio plays, some of which were broadcast on CBS. During World War II, Miller was exempted from military service because of a high-school football injury to his left kneecap.
In 1940, he married Mary Grace Slattery and they had two children, Jane and Robert.
Miller wrote The man who had all the Luck with which he won the Theatre Guild's National Award. The play had disastrous reviews and it closed after four performances.
With his play All my Sons in 1946, Miller earned his first Tony Award, for Best Author. In a 1994 Miller was interviewed by Ron Rifkin, where he said that “most contemporary critics regarded All my Sons as "a very depressing play in a time of great optimism" and that positive reviews from Brooks Atkinson of The New York Times had saved it from failure.”
In 1948 in Roxbury, Connecticut, Miller built a small studio for himself where he wrote Act I of Death of the Salesman in less than a day. Within six weeks, he...