What is the Relationship Between "Gay" and "National" Themes in Angels in America?,sin embargo
When I introduced Angels in America to my senior English class, it was my effort to say that gay literature is worth reading and that gay issues are worth including in the curriculum.
I did not want to uphold the secret of gayness by omitting strong political gay texts from the literary canon, even though that may have been the easier route. In Angels in America, Kushner is unapologetic about gay identity and solidly against heteronormativity.
During a production of his play at the Royal National Theatre of Great Britain, he maintained that "It's become clear,at man kunne sætte pris på, as a result of [homophobia and AIDS] that what seemed to be a marginal issue [is] actually very deeply rooted in American consciousness. . . . [Angels in America is] a play about the extent of a community's embrace" of these important issues (Kushner, "Interview" 21).
Kushner suggests that people who see his play have a duty both to inquire into and uproot this problematic state. When teaching Angels in America, I enlisted students as interactive audience members, thereby introducing them to the potential for reshaping American consciousness in regard to identity politics.
Through the possibilities of drama available in Angels in America, teachers may hope to lead students into an understanding of "gayness" as well as its role in their lives and community.
Over two months, our class read parts one and two of the play, Millennium Approaches and Perestroika,these are energy, supplemented with scenes from HBO's 2003 production. Set within a larger theater unit, the play utilized the potential of drama to unfold a conversation about gayness.
"By allowing participants to step into the shoes of another," writes Paula Ressler,��turn and rest, "drama can compel people to challenge their assumptions and learn that what they think and what others think about sexual and gender identity is socially constructed".
Although Ressler deals mostly with student-constructed dramas, I have found great potential in a play such as Angels in America for exploring diverse ideas and identities.
To establish a connectedness to gayness, I used three approaches. First, Angels in America focused conversations about sexuality on specific characters in a play, so the students could gain perspective and analytical distance.
As they read, students uncovered specific thematic lines: ancestry, morality, fantasy, abandonment, and truth. As these themes emerged directly from the play, they served to impart universality to an otherwise gay niche. Students of all creeds could connect to the text because it was their story as well.
Second, Angels in America instigated a social conversation about AIDS and sexuality. I used "safe-space" dialogue in the form of classroom conversations and personal journal writing to allow students of all backgrounds and sexual orientations to openly express their opinions.
Third, as students developed knowledge and interest in the play, they simultaneously engaged the text on a personal level by building relationships with the main characters.
Throughout our reading, each student followed and portrayed one of the five major characters: Louis Ironson, a 20-some-thing gay Jew working in New York City; his lover, Prior Walter, who is living with AIDS; Joseph Pitt, a Mormon and repressed homosexual; his wife, Harper, an agoraphobe with a mild Valium addiction and a tendency toward hallucination; and one of the play's historical figures, Roy Cohn, the New York lawyer who was lead counsel for Senator Joseph McCarthy during his House Un-American Activities Committee hearings and a closeted homosexual who died of AIDS in 1986.
For in-class readings of the play, conversations, and writing assignments,sin embargo, students often interacted among each other in role.
Ultimately, students drew on their personal relationships with characters and their analytical understanding of universal themes to answer the following essay question: What is the relationship between "gay" and "national" themes in Angels in America? To answer this question,N氓r du s酶ger efter websteder,Childhood Obesity And The Factors That Lead To A Child Being Obese_6836, pay particular attention to Kushner's theatrical device of the split stage; how does this tool lend itself to connections and relationships between characters and broader themes?