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re: What Margo Jefferson said about Caroline Or Change reminds us of how different the theater would be if there were Black women critics
Posted by: ablankpage 09:11 am EDT 08/20/19
In reply to: re: What Margo Jefferson said about Caroline Or Change reminds us of how different the theater would be if there were Black women critics - jconnors 07:41 am EDT 08/20/19

Yeah, I'm having trouble with Ms. Jefferson's statement too. Songs like "I Got Four Kids," "Gonna Pass Me A Law," "1943," "Lot's Wife," and "Underwater" all immediately spring to mind, which explicitly fill out her backstory, her fantasies, her inner conflict. The trauma and depression she keeps bottled up contrast with her staid and prickly exterior. Life hasn't afforded Caroline the freedom that Noah has to live in the rich fantasy world of youth (we even see that contrasted in the brief moment Caroline's kids get to live in the fantasy of wealth) and I think that's the whole point. Black women of the era, and today, don't have the financial or social currency and have to bury themselves to survive. Contrasted with other characters like Dotty, Rose, and Emmie who we know much less about biographically, but push the story forward as antagonists to Caroline's point of view (Dotty goes to college, has a boyfriend, and dresses young; Rose is the try-hard white woman who just can't get out of her own way; and Emmie is the vision of social progression towards equality), I would argue that Caroline's complexities are shown in interior arias as well as exterior interactions with the world. I'd be really curious to hear more of what Ms. Jefferson meant by "her lack of a real inner life."
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