Rachel Corrie play banned in NY theater

Published May 16th, 2006 - 01:29 GMT

The play about martyr Rachel Corrie, who was killed after she was run over by a bulldozer operated by the Israel's occupation army when trying to defend a Palestinian home, was recently banned from a theater in New York City.


23-year old Corrie, an American citizen who was in the Gaza Strip three years ago as part of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), was serving as a "human shield" against Israeli aggression.


Corrie, dressed in a bright orange vest, stood between the American made, Israeli-run bulldozer as it attempted to ruthlessly demolish the house of a Palestinian pharmacist in the town of Rafah. The operator of the bulldozer could clearly see Corrie. However, the bulldozer nonetheless ran over the young girl's chest and skull, and then backed up. She died shortly thereafter.


The story of her life, told in a play composed of letters and journal entries from Corrie, titled "My Name is Rachel Corrie," had two successful runs in London.


However, when a "progressive" New York theater began delaying its debut for political reasons, it was clear that the important play would not be allowed to run in the theater, for fear of insulting "certain" members of the audience and New York.


English producers later denounced the decision by the New York Theatre Workshop as "censorship", according to The Nation.


Corrie's bereaved parent also commented on the theater's decision. "The impact of this decision is enormous--it is bigger than Rachel and bigger than this play," Cindy Corrie, Rachel's mother, said. "There was something about this play that made them feel so vulnerable. I saw in the Workshop's schedule a lesbian play. Will they use the same approach? Will they go to the segment of the community that would ardently oppose that?"


In the meantime, the play has also been forced to go underground in several other locations, including Toronto. Limited copies of the book, based on the play, are currently available in stores.  


© 2006 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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