Published: March 22, 2006
To the Editor:
Re "Theater Addresses Tension Over Play" (Arts pages, March 16):
We are Jewish writers who supported the Royal Court production of "My
Name Is Rachel Corrie." We are dismayed by the decision of the New York
Theater Workshop to cancel or postpone the play's production. We believe
that this is an important play, particularly, perhaps, for an American
audience that too rarely has an opportunity to see and judge for itself
the material it contends with.
In London it played to sell-out houses. Critics praised it. Audiences
found it intensely moving. So what is it about Rachel Corrie's writings,
her thoughts, her feelings, her confusions, her idealism, her courage,
her search for meaning in life — what is it that New York audiences must
be protected from?
The various reasons given by the workshop — Prime Minister Ariel
Sharon's coma, the election of Hamas, the circumstances of Rachel
Corrie's death, the "symbolism" of her tale — make no sense in the
context of this play and the crucial issues it raises about Israeli
military activity in the occupied territories.
Rachel Corrie gave her life standing up against injustice. A theater
with such a fine history should have had the courage to give New York
theatergoers the chance to experience her story for themselves.
London, March 20, 2006