Artist explores racial injustice through monologues

first_imgAs part of the annual Margaret M. Hill Endowed Visiting Artist performance, Anna Deavere Smith gave a lecture and performance titled “From Rodney King to Michael Brown: The Narrative of Ferguson,” in which she performed monologues from her first play, “Twilight: Los Angeles,” and her most recent project on the school-to-prison pipeline — the practices that push at-risk youth out of schools and into the criminal justice system.Professor of Theatre Katie Sullivan introduced Smith. She said Smith was the first visiting artist when the endowment began in 2006, so it was appropriate to invite her back for the 10th anniversary, especially in light of recent racial tensions in America.“As we have watched our country struggle with racial division and inequality once again these last two years — from Ferguson to Baltimore, and Cleveland, and then Chicago — it seemed a good time to hear from [Smith] again,” Sullivan said. “She has the wonderful capacity to engage in conversations and ultimately to listen carefully to everyone as she carves out space for us to understand each other on complex and distressing national issues that involve us all politically, racially and culturally.”Smith said she travels around the country and interviews different people who were involved in or who witnessed different racial injustices.“My grandfather told me when I was a girl, ‘If you say a word often enough, it becomes,’” Smith said. “For the last many years, I’ve been going around America with a tape recorder trying to become America word for word by repeating what people say and putting myself in other people’s words, the way you would put yourself in someone else’s shoes.”Smith said the excerpts from her plays focused on law enforcement and education. She said she would perform pieces from her play from 1992 and from her most recent play to show how tensions have not necessarily changed over the years.“One of the things that plagues America from time to time is the relationship between law enforcement and individuals,” Smith said. “ … We also haven’t really gotten over the sort of chasm between social classes and races, which means some people are left outside of opportunity.”According to Smith, her first play focused on the riots that ensued after the killing of Rodney King by Los Angeles police officers was captured on film and spread worldwide. Similarly, her most recent play focuses on the riots that ensued after the killing of Freddie Gray by Baltimore police officers was captured with a smartphone camera and broadcasted to the world. Smith performed as Stanley Sheinbaum, Elaine Young, Cornel West, Keith Godfrey, Kevin Moore and Michael Tubbs — all people she had interviewed — to illustrate the experiences of people who have been pushed to the edges of society.“I want to look at this because it’s sort of remarkable that it keeps happening,” Smith said. “The question is: Are there things that we here in this room … can do in our own lives to keep things from happening?”She said her performances are not about the police officers, citing a speech by President Barack Obama in which he said fixing the problem does not start with trying to fix the officers.“This is really a problem of poverty,” Smith said. “It’s a problem of who is left behind. The cops in many ways are here for all of us — including me — to protect us against the possibility that those who are disenfranchised will harm us, our property or our loved ones. They are in the trenches to protect us, so we need to get it together and do something about this gap that we have.”Tags: Anna Deavere Smith, Ferguson, Margaret M. Hill Endowed Visiting Artist, race, Rodney Kinglast_img read more

Man United captain to spend another night in a Greek jail cell

first_imgManchester United captain Harry Maguire was pictured today arriving at a Greek police station for a second night behind bars after allegedly punching a police officer and then attempting to bribe his way out custody. The £85million England international was allegedly involved in a bust-up with a group of other Englishmen before becoming ‘very abusive and aggressive’ towards officers who arrived to intervene last night on the island of Mykonos. Maguire, 27, spent the night in a cell along with two other men thought to be fellow players, aged 28 and 29, and the trio have been transferred to the neighbouring island of Syros where they will appear before the state prosecutor tomorrow on charges including aggravated assault, verbal assault and attempted bribery. The chief prosecutor told local media that he expects Maguire to make an apology at the hearing. Maguire, a father-of-two, was seen this evening being taken into Syros police station by plain-clothes officers after an hour-long ferry crossing to his new jail cell with the two other men. Police said that two of their officers suffered facial injuries during the scrap after they were allegedly hurled to the ground, punched and kicked. Maguire was yesterday pictured drinking at a pool party at SantAnna Bar with fellow United youngsters Marcus Rashford, 22, and Brandon Williams, 19, as well as Love Island star Chris Hughes, 27, and snooker player Judd Trump, 31 and his brother Joe Maguire. It is not clear if anybody at this party was with Maguire later that evening. Police today said that two groups of Englishmen were brawling outside Mykonos’ Fabrica bar in the early hours of Friday morning and when they tried to intervene they were rounded on by three men, including the centre-half. ‘When the brawl was all sorted out, one of the two groups – with the football players – started verbally abusing officers. There were several policemen there. At some point, one of the three members of the group – they were aged 27, 28, and 29 – threw a swing at one of the policemen and a fight ensued.’ Petros Vassilakis a police spokesman said. Read Also: Ideye set to undergo medicals at Turkish Super Lig side Manchester United said in a statement: ‘The club is aware of an alleged incident involving Harry Maguire in Mykonos last night. ‘Contact has been made with Harry, and he is fully co-operating with the Greek authorities. ‘At this time we will be making no further comment.’ FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 ‘All of the three were arrested but during the effort to do so, the other two, including the football player, got violent also. They threw down at least two policemen, hit them with their fists and kicked them.’ The police spokesman continued. ‘I can’t tell you what they were telling us. All English swear words against the authorities and against the work of the police. All three, including the football player, are being held in custody, locked up in Mykonos cell. They will appear before a state prosecutor on the island of Syros later today to be charged with aggravated assault.’ Maguire, who earns £190,000-a-week plans to cut short his holiday and return to the UK, according to a source at Manchester United. Lawyers for the club have been in contact with their player and they are awaiting clarification from police on the island over what charges he might face. ‘We are expecting more information from Mykonos as clarification is needed over exactly what happened and what charges he will face, if any.’ The lawyers said.center_img Leaked: Video Of Harry Maguire Fighting In Mykonos Greece before getting arrested.Watch videohttps://t.co/gnNtc065XE| Harry Maguire Fight Video |Retweet pic.twitter.com/fRobGV5IQz— ƳungƁlacMale (@DMPAUL_SR) August 21, 2020 Loading…last_img read more