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The Colored Museum

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  261 ratings  ·  14 reviews
The Colored Museum has electrified, discomforted, and delighted audiences of all colors, redefining our ideas of what it means to be black in contemporary America. Its eleven "exhibits" undermine black stereotypes old and new, and return to the facts of what being black means. " Mr. Wolfe is the kind of satirist who takes no prisoners. The shackles of the past have been de ...more
Paperback, 62 pages
Published January 12th 1994 by Grove Press (first published 1987)
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The Colored Museum is a series of scenes that depict different characters in each scene as if it were an exhibit to demonstrate what it means to be African American in the United States from slavery until the 1980’s. George C. Wolfe takes the functions of literature to add depth to particular stories in the past giving the reader a new perspective to understanding history.
What a fantastic play! It was hysterical, but it also brought to mind some very important issues in African-American history and theatre, as well as American theatre in itself.
Black satire at its best. Genius!
This addressed some pivotal issue in the Black community specifically, and America as a whole in relation to black culture. One of my favorites from my African American theatre class.
Rachel Linn
Apr 10, 2014 Rachel Linn added it
Shelves: theatre
"Before exiting, check the overhead as any baggage you don't claim, we trash." What a genius last line.
Fantastic. This play was so daring and it's surprising to see how necessary it still is.
Totally sharp, biting, and tight. This script is sadly as relevant today as it was when it was first performed. The variety of settings and characters adds a lot of depth and nuance to the show, but they are all tied together, and they present a complex, contradictory, and challenging look at black identity.
Nov 17, 2013 Craig rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: plays
Provocative, exciting, hilarious...had me thinking how I'd stage it as I read it because it grabbed my imagination and had it running away the whole time I was reading. I was also struck by the Miss Roj section, as it features a black drag queen, reading and snapping away in an evocation of the east coast drag scene, a la "Paris is Burning."
Clever and smart humor. This play captures blackness on display and under restraint. "It's not everyday a bunch of babies break outta a white egg and start to live."
Jeffrey W.
Definitely recommended to fans of Ishmael Reed's work.
Oh memories...of my favorite BTE play.
Robert-anthony Artlet
AMAZING a must read play :)
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