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Dutchman. Amiri Baraka. CHARACTERS. CLAY, twenty‐year‐old Negro. LULA, thirty‐year‐old white woman. RIDERS OF COACH, white and black. The Dutchman and The Slave Community Note includes chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis, character list, theme by Imamu Amiri Baraka, LeRoi Jones. This one-page guide includes a plot summary and brief analysis of Dutchman by Amiri Baraka. Dutchman is a one-act play that revolves almost exclusively.

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When Lula enters the bus, she sits near him and starts a conversation. The story is drowning in the dramatization of religious symbolism. Any major social or political force ignores or discounts women at its own peril. The Slave, which was produced off-Broadway the following fall, continues to be the subject of heated critical controversy.

Clay is shocked by her apparent knowledge of his past and says that she must be a friend of Warren. The characters engage in a long, flirtatious conversation throughout the train ride. Dutchman was the last play produced by Baraka under his birth name, LeRoi Jones. And yet, here it was, on stage no less, with all of its symbolic and actual power. Through the relationship of Lula and Clay in her play, Amiri Baraka reveals the social and political relationship of White Americans and African-Americans in the context of the Black Power movements.

His homophobic views toward Bradford Easley amirl how America in the 20th century had unsavory views concerning not only race but sex. These are shocking, angry plays, but especially for the time, gestures such as these were probably the dhtchman things that could wake up some people.


As soon as Clay speaks out against Lula’s outrageous behavior, he is killed and kicked off the train without any thought or consequence to Lula.

In another Amiri Baraka kills Hettie Jones and her academic husband in a domestic space in the future. Clay states that if black people stopped trying to heal their pain through dance, music, civic participation, religion, or focusing on moving upwards in American society, and became coldly rational like white people, black people would just kill all the whites and be done with racism in America. I read these plays as part of my Rebels and Revolutionaries: The play’s title evokes images of Dutch ships that carried slaves across the Atlantic.

Dutchman & The Slave

While the play is violent and disturbing, I’ve been looking for plays to pair with a study of Dutchamn and I thought Baraka seemed a perfect fit.

Striking parallels and reversals reaffirm the sense that these two plays are meant to go hand in hand. I could definitely see Jones instilled much of his anger, criticism, and rebellious nature into Vessels character.

On the other hand, I appl I’ve read only Dutchman. The same year, he moved to Greenwich Village working initially in a warehouse for music records.

The pay off is worth it though. It turned everything upside down, or rather right side up.

His first significant play, Dutchman ; filmwhich recounted an explosive confrontation on a train between a black intellectual and a white woman who murders him, won the Obie Award for best Off-Broadway American play. But the message Baraka is screaming through this play is loud, clear and important.


barakka There was a problem with your submission. The relationship between Lula and Clay serves as an allegory for the larger issue of racial discrimination in the United States.

Dutchman | play by Baraka |

She accuses him of staring at her buttocks. This moment in the play reminded me of the plantations. At the same time, the anti-semitism that started showing up in his writing in the s and persisted until the end of his life pains me. A white woman or person can get away with acting out and outrageous and never suffering for it at all. And it makes sense that Dutchman is paired with this.

The sexism in Baraka’s work can not, should not and will not be ignored in the days, months and years to come. Aug 11, Jason Williams rated it really liked barkaa Shelves: Boldly radical and fiercely truthful! But it’s individuals who are dying. You can make it easier for us to review and, hopefully, publish your contribution by keeping a few points in mind.

Return to Book Page. Published January 1st by Harper Perennial first published It was something Baldwin said when he was on a television show talking about protest and black civil rights.