Comparing Ideologies on African American Theatre

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Comparing ideologies on African American theatre

Bringing together two races that have been neck and neck, and separated for centuries is a hard feat to accomplish. The harsh brutalities, endless torment and death left scars that will forever be visible on humanity in the United States. Without a doubt its certain that the outrage felt by the African American community will sizzle on.

American Theatre was a perfect outlet to express the life and stories of a culture that was ridiculed for so long. Men like Amiri Baraka and August Wilson brought a new age to the theatre. They were able to bring stories of loss, pain, and anger to life in an artistic way. Each of their plays had great impact on audiences of all types. Individuals like this opened new doors and broadened the view of African Americans pursuit of happiness.

Baraka and Wilson both sought the revival of American culture with a strong black community, but they most definitely had different ways of expressing their work. Baraka was the first to be recognized for his work. After reading “The Revolutionary Theatre”, an impression of anger and disgust is given off. Baraka was not afraid to use slander, or derogatory remarks in any of his script. His plays are not something you would want a high school drama class to put on showcase. When compared to Wilson, Baraka was undoubtedly a black cultural nationalist. As you read the plays such as “Dutchman”, the words just pierce through you, and sometimes you think to yourself, did that really happen? His work was short, yet very powerful. Brought on from growing up in a racist world he thought it important to bring to light the issues no one would want to consider. Baraka could cleverly bring together many issues and put them into a work like the “Dutchman.” He uses characters like Clay to portray young, smart, sophisticated, college educated African Americans that are only striving to better themselves in society. And then there are characters like...
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