Stuff Happens
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Stuff Happens

3.66 of 5 stars 3.66  ·  rating details  ·  157 ratings  ·  14 reviews
"Stuff happens . . . And it's untidy, and freedom's untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things."

Such was Donald Rumsfeld's response on April 11, 2003, following the infamous looting and pillaging of Baghdad. In David Hare's powerful new play chronicling the extraordinary process leading to the American invasion of Iraq, this state...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published October 1st 2005 by Faber & Faber
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Sam Haddow
Robert Fisk, commenting on Colin Powell’s appearance at the February 2003 UN Security Council Meeting, said that Powell seemed quite unsure of himself, halting and unconvincing, as he delivered his now infamous fairytale justifying the US’s subsequent invasion of Iraq. Conversely, Fisk noted, when he saw David Hare’s Stuff Happens in New York, three years later, the Powell on stage was much more forceful, more charismatic, and a good deal more sure of himself.

I mention Powell, because Hare has...more
Apr 17, 2012 Phil rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: drama
I thought this was an ok play. I mean, its approach was interesting and the quasi-documentary style challenged the way we think about current events and contemporary politics. But I just wasn't interested in the basic substance of the play. 9/11 and the build up to the Iraq invasion simply aren't interesting subjects for me.

This play does challenge us to think more deeply about what has become a political platitude--that politics is more show than substance. This play performs the disjunction be...more
Calum Parfitt
I really enjoyed this polemic, it takes an unsentimental look at the events leading up to the outbreak of the Iraq war. Funny and sinister, the play is a scathing attack on the Bush administration, though some 'characters' get it a lot worse than others. Although the figures are in essence acting out a plot to which we already know the final picture, the play is still thought provoking and exciting.
Michael Gardener
Mar 20, 2013 Michael Gardener is currently reading it
while reading this (now in small increments, a scene at a time while on the toilet) i must keep in mind the good intentions of the play write to provide us with a dramatization of what he imagines may have taken place in those undocumented private meetings. suffice to say it was probably uglier then this play depicts.

An incredible and unlikely page-turner. You actually see the play in your head as you read. The second I was done reading it, I started at the beginning and read it all again a second time--something i don't ever remember doing with any book or play before. I'd recommend it to anyone.
Making the fall of Colin Powell as the arc in this play was a very smart choice. If anyone lost their soul in this administration, it was Powell, if only by virtue of the fact that he was the only cabinet member who had one to lose.
An exercise in taking quotes and events (nonfiction) from the press and other sources, then writing a piece of fiction. Or is it? A historical play. That's what it is. Very recent history. Overall, good read.
Michelle Lynne Widmann
Not something I'd normally read, but I did enjoy the fact that it outted the government as a group of individuals who don't really understand what it is they're saying, or the impact of world events.
I saw a production of this play in Los Angeles two or three years ago. What is said about the recent history of the United States actions in Afghanistan and Iraq were deeply insightful and poignant.
Mar 14, 2008 Brynn rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2008
Disappointing. No great insights into the people involved, just a retelling of the whole disaster in play form. What was the point?
Everyone involved in any way in the war on terror must read this play.
Penetrating, funny take on our current mess, from a British perspective.
Nathan Black
One of the best plays I have ever read.
Nov 03, 2007 Dana rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: plays
Awful play! I couldn't even finish it.
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“On September 11th, America changed. Yes. It got much stupider.” 2 likes
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