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. The Logic of Retribution: Amiri Baraka’s. Dutchman. Nita N. Kumar, Professor of English at Shyama Prasad. Mukherji College, University of Delhi, has a Ph.D. in.
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The play, which won an Obie Award. Dutchman was the last play produced by Baraka under his birth name, LeRoi Jones. At the time, he was in the process of divorcing his Jewish wife, Hettie Jonesand embracing Black Nationalism. Dutchman may be described as a political allegory depicting black and white relations during the time Baraka wrote it.
The action focuses almost exclusively on Lula, a white woman, and Clay, a black man, who both ride the subway in New York City. Clay’s name is symbolic of the malleability of black identity and black manhood. It is also symbolic of integrationist and assimilationist ideologies within the contemporary Civil Rights Movement. The characters engage in a long, flirtatious conversation throughout the train ride.
Lula sits down next to Clay. She accuses him of staring at her buttocks. She ignores his denials and uses stereotypes to correctly guess where he lives, where he is going, what Clay’s friend, Warren, looks and talks like. Lula guesses that Clay tried to get his own sister to have sex with him when he was Clay is shocked by her apparent knowledge of his past and says that she must be a friend of Warren.
Lula is glad that Clay is so easy to manipulate and puts her hand on his leg. She feeds him apples.
She tells Clay to dutchma her out to the party he is going to. At this point, it is unclear whether Clay is really going to a party, but he tells her he really is.
Lula vaguely alludes to having sex with Clay at her “apartment” after the “party”. We don’t know if these are real or conveniently made-up by Lula. Clay is gladdened by Lula’s apparent liking for him and maintains a hopeful attitude to having sex together.
However, he does not push his hope onto her and waits for Lula to make the offer first. Lula is angered by Clay’s not falling for her manipulative tactics.
She switches strategies and mocks Clay’s Anglo-American speech, his college education and barakka three-button suit. She derides his being black and passive. Clay, who does not respond initially, eventually grabs her and throws her down. Clay accuses Lula of knowing nothing but “luxury”.
He slaps her twice and tells her to leave him alone. Clay launches into a monologue. Clay suggests that whites let black people dance “black” dances and make dutchmn music.
He explains that these segregatory actions assuage black Americans’ anger towards whites and distracts them from accessing the “white man’s intellectual legacy”. 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 dutchmah rational like white people, black people would just kill all the whites and be done with racism baraks America. Clay says that if he were to take Lula’s words to heart, he should just kill all the white people he meets.
Although Clay says all this, he deeply rejects this plan of action. He states that he does not want to kill and that he prefers to be ignorant of the problem. He says he would rather choose to pretend to be ignorant of racism, not try to get rid of it by fighting with whites.
Once Clay makes his confession, Lula changes strategies again. Clay makes as if to leave, but Lula coolly, rationally, stabs him twice to the heart. She directs all the other passengers, blacks and whites, in the train car to throw his body out and get out at the next stop. The play ends with Lula looking towards another young black man who has dutchkan boarded the garaka mostly empty train car. The elderly black dutcjman conductor steps into the compartment and tips Lula his hat.
The play’s title evokes images of Dutch ships that carried slaves across the Atlantic. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Dutchman | play by Baraka |
Books and Writers kirjasto. Archived from the original on May 4, Amiri Baraka as political satirist”African American Review Amiri Baraka’s “Dutchman” and the Book of Proverbs”. Retrieved from ” https: Views Read Edit View history.