Hard Cover. New York: Rinehart & Co., 1949. 1st Edition. Near Fine / Dust Jacket Included.
Edited and Introduced by Carl van Vechten. First edition. Publisher's orange cloth, lettered in gilt; in the original orange dust jacket, lettered in black and white. Book fine; unclipped dust jacket, with some light wear and rubbing to the extremities, a hint of toning to the spine, fresh panels. Overall, a near fine and attractive copy. Last Operas and Plays is a posthumous collection of nineteen dramatic works written from 1917-1945 that includes "A Circular Play," "An Exercise in Analysis," "A Play Called Not and Now," "Four Saints in Three Acts," "A Play of Pounds," and "Photograph," among others. In particular, Last Operas and Plays collects the previously unpublished plays and manuscript materials from the archival collection of Gertrude Stein papers housed at Yale University. Like many of her fellow expatriates and members of the "Lost Generation," Stein's dramas are written in an Avant-garde and stream of consciousness style that make them uniquely beautiful; as Carl van Vechten writes in his introduction, "Gertrude Stein's conception of playwriting differs from that of any other dramatist whose work has reached the theatre or printed page… she conceives a play as static in form. She has said that anything that could not be a story could be a play and again that 'When I see a thing it is not a play for me, but when I write something that somebody else can see it is a play for me.'"