April 7th, 2009

What a powerful play. When I started reading it I was not that interested. After watching the performance in class I went home and finished the play. It is hard for me to comment on the reading outside of the movie, because the filming really made the point.

Smith was completely psychzophrenic in her performance. At first the different personalities and different view points lead me to believe that the L.A riots were completely complex, and there is nothing that can fix what did happen or what will happen. I was confused what Smith was trying to convey. Through emotion, smith expressed the LA riots in the most simple of terms, everyone involved was human. All of the personalities had different opinions on the justification of the verdict, and the riots that followed, but the underlining theme was that they were all in fear. Even the most angry rioter was rioting because he feared the government. Not only where they all in fear, but they were all in pain. Some reacted with violence, and other with tears.

I tried to read the novel in terms of where were the police, or what were institutions doing. But I found this counter to the purpose of the play. The play may have focused on the people who were forever changed by the riots to accentuate the lack of police involved. But as I read it, she brought to light how everyone felt. There were deep cultural issues. The classic teenage phrase sums up what I think “Nobody Understands Me.”
Nobody understands that store owners lose money from kids who DO steal from their stores
Nobody understands that just because Im a black kids in a mini market means I am going to steal something
Nobody understands that just because I speak mexican does not mean that I am in a gang

the list goes on and on, but these stereotypes do feed out of something that does exist. There is a blindness in American toward other cultures this creates fear, and often hysteria, but worse of all it leads to misunderstandings.

Comments are closed.