Tuesday, May 01, 2007

A bit of context for the last post:

1) The Nonsense Company has, on its tour of the last five weeks, been performing Rick Burkhardt's play Conversation Storm, which I think shows debate (in this case, about current US policy on torture) to be a dead end when the basic gulf between the opponents is as great as it is between, say, me and someone who thinks that torture is justifiable and necessary.

2) While in Olympia the Company saw a production of My Name is Rachel Corrie. I was a bit worried about it, and was surprised (I can't say "pleasantly," since the play largely left me shaken and distressed), mostly by Corrie's quite excellent writing.

The play (which was first produced in England and then later staged in NYC after the original New York production had voluntarily censored itself, shutting down the production after many complaints from the people arrogant enough to call themselves "the Jewish community") is being produced in Seattle, and the staging in Olympia was a satellite performance (Oly being Corrie's home town). Like the other performers who've played the part, this actress has been getting death threats. I don't think I need to rant about this here. The juxtaposition of the critical but explicitly pacifist play with the psychosis of the attacks on it should be enough. Or one could add to the juxtaposition the fact that in Israel, where the majority of citizens oppose their government's methodical destruction of Palestine, one can discuss the matter, while in the United States one who isn't threatened with death will at least be accused of condoning murder and ethnic cleansing, shouted down until they shut up.


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