Dutchman – LeRoi Jones (1964)

1960s: Days of Rage


Dutchman is a play written by African-American playwright Amiri Baraka, then known as LeRoi Jones. Dutchman was first presented at the Cherry Lane Theatre in Greenwich Village, New York City, on March 1964. The play, which won an Obie Award was made into a film in 1967, starring Shirley Knight and Al Freeman Jr.Dutchman was the last play produced by Baraka under his birth name, LeRoi Jones. At the time, he was in the process of divorcing his Jewish wife, Hettie Jones, and embracing Black Nationalism. Dutchman may be described as a political allegory depicting black and white relations during the time Baraka wrote it. … The action focuses almost exclusively on Lula, a white woman, and Clay, a black man, who both ride the subway in New York City. Clay’s name is symbolic of the malleability of black identity and…

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