Susan Lori Parks

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Susan Lori Parks in her own way is one of the most unique African American writers that are still alive today. She has her own sense of creativity when it comes to writing to a specific audience, which were mostly African Americans. Some of her works included; The America Play, Top dog or Underdog, Venus, Fucking A and In The Blood. These are just some of the masterpieces that she has written in the span of fifteen years. The America Play is one of her later works that was written in January 1994. She utilizes imagery in this book to grasp her readers’ attention and to think critically on the real story that she is trying to tell. In the beginning of the book, which is her first entitled, Possession states, “I’m working theatre like an incubator…show more content…
But the play surrounds the history of Abraham Lincoln and Susan Lori Parks, recreates the play by transforming Abraham Lincoln into a black male in the late 1860s. In history class when we were younger we learned the history of Abraham Lincoln, read some of his great speeches and the things he had done for the slaves in the South; for example, The Emancipation Proclamation. In a New York Times article titled, Theater; Beyond a Black and White Lincoln written by Joshua Wolf Shenk, which talks about The America Play and Other Works, he states in the article, “Abraham Lincoln thought slavery was a “moral, social and political evil,” devoted himself to preventing its spread and, as president, issued the Emancipation Proclamation.” This is the Abraham Lincoln that we all know and learn about. He freed the slaves and wanted everyone to be equal; however, despite the large amounts of individuals who see Abraham as this person not many see him this way. In the article it goes on to state, “In 1922, for instance, W.EB. Dubois wrote in the N.A.A.C.P magazine The Crisis that Lincoln was “big enough to be inconsistent, cruel, merciful; peace loving, a fighter; despising Negroes and letting them fight and vote; protecting slavery and freeing slaves.” Not everyone accepted Abraham Lincoln for what he did for slaves. W.EB. Dubois was a respected African…show more content…
In Family Acts: History, Memory, and Performance in Suzan-Lori Parks's the America Play and Top dog/ Underdog by Kurt Bullock, he states, “Park focuses on the staging of new and alternative interpretations of historical situations which emphasizes her awareness of the subjectivity and bias of traditionally white history,” he states. Many blacks are exposed to the White history or the point of view of the white individual, so Parks’ is trying to change their ideas into a less traditional learning experience, which is changing one of America’s presidents into a black male. By doing this Park is changing the point of view of the majority and recreating it into her own idea, which she feels will impact her black audience greatly, by showing them a different perspective of a one-sided view. In the rest of the article, it goes on to say, “In the America Play, Parks does this by staging a black Abraham Lincoln look alike who disturbs and challenges the white- defined Lincoln myth that plays an essential part in American history and modern American identity construction.” There are several ways to interpret the ideas that Susan Lori Parks brings about in the play, by making Abraham Lincoln black. In the play the Black Lincoln is known and called the Lesser Known and the Foundling Father. A foundling father is defined as an infant that has been abandoned by its

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