Two Theatrical Responses to War: Embedded and Stuff Happens

By Theresa M. Mason.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Two notable plays, "Embedded" and "Stuff Happens," critique the war in Iraq and the plans leading up to the Iraqi invasion. "Embedded" is an incisive satire by Tim Robbins that premiered in the United States in November 2003. "Stuff Happens," by British playwright David Hare, weaves historical speeches and fictional scenes into a historical drama that premiered in London in September 2004. Both plays have been acclaimed as compelling, masterful dramas and condemned as one-sided propaganda. The paper will utilize a cross-disciplinary approach to draw relevant insights about propaganda and analyze whether or not "Embedded" and "Stuff Happens" should be considered propaganda.

Keywords: Theatre, War, Propaganda

The International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 1, Issue 6, pp.73-80. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.760MB).

Dr. Theresa M. Mason

Chaplain and Assistant Professor of Religion, Hamline University, St. Paul, MN, USA

I have woven together the arts, social concerns and the sacred throughout my life. After serving as a United Methodist pastor in California, USA for 10 years I returned to graduate school to earn my Ph.D. in Theatre Arts from University of Oregon. I have written and directed plays and other art forms such as readers theater and puppetry. One example of community outreach theatre is "I am Your Neighbor," a play I wrote with people who immigrated to Oregon, which was performed throughout the state to address anti-immigant attitudes. Currently, I direct the Spirit Bound Players, a group of college students who develop drama and music, which they perform in churches and in the community in Minnesota and Wisconsin. I teach a variety of courses in the Religion Department at Hamline University, but my major research interest is in the arts and religion.

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