Monday, October 11, 2010

The Human Scale ***

"A plague on both your houses" could well be a summary of Lawrence Wright's theater piece "The Human Scale." More an illustrated lecture than a play, this 80-minute work about Gaza finds more than enough blame to go around on both sides of the conflict. Pulitzer Prize-winning author Wright has expanded an article he wrote for The New Yorker and adapted it for the stage. Wright is no actor and is not blessed with charisma, but these shortcomings are more than balanced by his skill as a journalist. Using the capture of Israeli soldier Gidan Shalit by Hamas as a framework, Wright delves into the causes, both immediate and ancient, of this event, as well as its consequences for the present and the future. The video clips and photographs are well-chosen and add greatly to the impact of his words. The overall effect on me was powerful, although I left the theater feeling even more hopeless than before about the prospects for peace.

No comments: