Monday, February 18, 2008

wait a minute, Ms. Weiss

I made a little promise to myself that I'd only post once a day, you know, so I could also work, but I just saw something so over-the-top wrong and stupid that I can't keep my fingers off the keyboard.

Hedy Weiss, in today's Chicago Sun-Times, praises a show called Harriet Jacobs at Steppenwolf. So, right, they're doing a show about black people in February, like all regional theaters with good, guilty, liberal consciences do, this is not a Steppenwolf slam at all, but here's the bizarre and disturbing thing:

The headline is Making the History of Slavery Seem Real.


Maybe they're using different textbooks in the schools since I was a boy, but I was always taught that the history of slavery was real.

Just occuring to me as I type this that journalists don't get to choose the headlines, that's an editor's job, I think. So who's the revisionist over at the Sun-Times?

Am I way over-reacting? Don't answer that, just do the Music Quiz below and I'll shut up.

But that's weird, right?


Rose said...

I'm thinking that for a lot of white people, they'd rather believe it wasn't real. Maybe that's why they missed how horrid that title is. People are surprisingly good at anything to do with cognitive dissonance. Yikes. PS: I just sent you an email with commentary on the play of brilliance.

John said...

Just brings up the whole strange modern understanding or misunderstanding of what the theater does. Probably just too deep into the Overlord argument with myself.

Ann said...

My husband, who writes headlines on occasion as part of his job, informes me that the Sun Times has just gone though a round of layoffs and buy outs...he suspects that perhaps the extra-stupid people are writing the headlines over there these days.

But it's always something when theater can make something so real you'd rather pretend it wasn't seem...uh, real-er.

And hey - if living in Bush's America has taught us anything, it's that history is whatever the fuck the suits tell us it is...

showard said...

my experience is the writer always blames the editor they're probably both 25 years old and think that Harriet Jacobs, the author and a former slave makes slavery real for the audience through her stories. their subliminal slip up is also real or should I say seems real.

Rose said...

Hey! Not all 25 year olds are that stupid! (mutter mutter)

John said...


Shouldn't you be in bed?

Thanks for the tip on the moon, checking it out later.