In The Respectful Prostitute by Jean-Paul Sartre, a woman- a prostitute- on a train traveling to the southern United States, witnesses a murder committed by a 'white man', the son of a rich and influential family. A black man is also involved directly. Although very weary of police and authorities, Lizzie, the prostitute, is resolved to tell the truth- if absolutely necessary. But the family and friends of the murderer and the seventeen thousand white inhabitants of the town have other scenarios about who committed the crime and why. After all, they are 'surrounded' by twenty thousand black people, in a town and ina country the 'belongs' to them!
Written in 1946 and based on a real event, the play—unfortunately—still seems relevant today, with its words and ideas echoing those expressed with recent times and with great impudence.
The evening's program begins with Bertolt Brecht's short play The Jewish Wife. Written in 1937 and set in the same year in Berlin during the times of ever more intensifying persecution by the Nazis, the Jewish wife of an Aryan German surgeon has come to a decision.
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