Friday, July 11, 2008

This sounds like a very timely play:

When Betty Campbell, in the role of Mother Courage, sits with her knees apart and opines, "In a proper society, there's no need for virtue," it rings as the self-defense that it is. There is little virtue in this crabbed and gaunt figure that feeds on the misery of war.

Her assertion that soldiers need to be brave only when the generals are incompetent especially resonates against current blunders in Iraq.

"What is courage," asks Courage, "but a failure of planning?"

It's those parallels that director Dorothy Cosby Atkinson would like us to draw in Edge Theatre Ensemble's production of Bertolt Brecht's famed condemnation of war. Written in the wake of his native Germany's invasion of Poland, Brecht pilloried those who profit from war as it brutalizes everyone else. In 1939, the culprits included armaments manufacturer Krupp; Atkinson wants us to think of Halliburton.


This is such a sad story. There is no excuse for anyone to fight over something like this:

Man critically hurt in fight over traffic circle.

James Paroline, 60, had put out traffic cones Wednesday to re-direct traffic at 61st Avenue S. and S. Cooper Street while he was watering.

Neighbors say three young women approached in a car and told Paroline to move his cones. When he refused, they tried to move them and he sprayed water on one of the girls.

"They approached him and was just yelling at him, telling him to unblock the road so they could get through," said neighbor Stedman Tauala. "He said no, the (expletive) out of here,"

Tauala says the argument got quite heated.

"I just saw the girl got in his face and he just pushed her and smacked her in the face," said Tauala.

At that point, a man in his 20's, also in a car at the intersection, punched Paroline, knocking him down and cracking open his head. He was taken to the hospital in critical condition.

Update: the news today is that James Paroline died at Harborview. So sad. So sad.



Dick said...

The greatness of Brecht's plays surely lies in his refusal to accord to any of his protagonists either heroic or anti-heroic status. Even the ostensibly heroic Grusha in The Caucasian Chalk Circle is described as 'none too bright'! So the agenda is carried by the narrative and in Mother Courage, MC herself is, from the start, at the mercy of the forces that she serves. Indeed, is there a BB play more relevant to our times than Mother Courage? Sounds like a fine production. I'm sorry that for the sake of a few thousand miles I missed it!

Peter said...

Hi Dick:
Welcome to the Virtual World. I take it you are in England somewhere?
Anyway, I read this play years ago in college, and I am hoping to see the play this weekend.

Collin said...

Mother Courage is a must for theatre and poetry lovers. If you ever get the chance, Peter, do see it.