Friday, April 26, 2019

Play a Day: Am I White

Adrienne Dawes
For Friday I read Am I White by Adrienne Dawes and available at New Play Exchange.

"Resisting a thing brings up the opposite of what we want. Force brings about counter-force."

We listen to a lot of ska in our house, or at least it comes up a lot. The wife loves it, two-tone music. A celebration of diversity, an opposition to fascism, authoritarianism.

The original skinheads were an outgrowth of this, in Great Britain in the 1960s. SHARP, "skinheads against racial prejudice." Few Americans are aware of this history, and would be surprised to learn how many trappings of the white supremacist skinhead were simply hijacked from this entirely antithetical movement.

Appropriation comes in many forms.

Dawes play questions the very nature of race, and the madness that inflicts our nation as a result of our original sin -- not just slavery, but the self-hypnosis under which we put ourselves to create an artificial concept called "race" by which others are held apart.

Set in the months before 9/11, it was a startling reminder of a time before the general public was aware of just how vast and angry the white supremacist movement was, a time when it was unthinkable that a white supremacist could ever become President again.

Inspired by true events, a young person of color passes as white and through his time in prison, strong dream imagery and news accounts, learn how he came to develop the self-loathing which would lead him to reach for a place of prominence in a new family, a family fueled entirely by the hatred of people like himself.

Racial purity is a lie. Hitler's "fatherland" was for the crossroads for marauders and conquest, there is no one, pure race. So as long as one lies and is beholden to lies and believes in lies, why not crawl into absolute denial and pretend to be what doesn't exist in the first place?

Who should I read tomorrow?

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