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The Columnist: A Play
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The Columnist: A Play

3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  77 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
A new play from the Pulitzer- and Tony Award–winning author of Proof, coming to Broadway this April

In midcentury America, newspaper columnists are kings—and Joseph Alsop wears the biggest crown. Joe sits at the nexus of Washington life: beloved, feared, and courted in equal measure by the very people whose careers and futures he determines. But as the sixties dawn and Amer
Paperback, 99 pages
Published April 24th 2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published April 10th 2012)
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Rachelle Urist
Jun 12, 2012 Rachelle Urist rated it liked it
A good play. Missed it in NY (along with several other plays whose scripts I just ordered, so I can keep up with what I'm not seeing). Offers the story of the columnist, Joseph Alsop, who not only influenced many thinkers of his generation (before and after the Vietnam war) but also advised a number of presidents and cabinet members. He applauded Kennedy for staring down the Soviets in Cuba; he urged the surge to McNamara and Westmoreland in Vietnam; but his voice dimmed as the hippie generation ...more
Peter Orvetti
Sep 25, 2015 Peter Orvetti rated it liked it
"The Columnist" presents an interesting man, and does not explore him enough.

Auburn takes on the life of Joe Alsop, a columnist whose influence in the middle of the last century is hard to comprehend in this modern era of specialized, sliced-up bits of media. Alsop could actually change policy, and make or destroy careers with his words, and he loved that power. He also saw it as a great responsibility.

Much of the story revolves around Alsop's very closeted homosexuality and how it would be used
May 13, 2015 Joshua rated it liked it
The play's greatest strength is it's structure and plotting. By pulling out the choicest moments, Auburn creates a sense of the sweep of history even while spinning his characters through it. However, the main character remains somewhat of a mystery, even by the end, overshadowed by his more complex and compelling brother. A lesser work in many respects than Proof, but expertly plotted and not without it's surprising moments.
Christopher Hendrix
Aug 01, 2012 Christopher Hendrix rated it liked it
Surely not Auburn at his best, but it's still David Auburn.
Interesting biographical representation of Joseph Alsop's life and career. I learned something, as is usually the case with an Auburn play. Enjoyable, funny, saddening, and a good read.
Mattie Voorheis
Jan 09, 2014 Mattie Voorheis rated it it was ok
I had never heard of Joe or Stewart Alsop before reading this, so the two stars I gave this book can represent each of them. Good guys to know, anecdotally. A fine piece, but mostly just made me want to re-read "Farragut North."
Jun 13, 2012 Jason rated it really liked it
Totally engaged in this-I think it helps that I have a good grasp on history and I know who Joe Alsop is, but it's really well put together. Fully fleshed out characters, intense dialogue, and fascinating subject matter make this an all around great read.
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