A Second Slice of Pity

The scene is reworked, now a story of a Romanian prostitute in present-day Venice, speaking with two mercfenary contractors …

DL: is it political now?

W2: very different language … not a first person story – it’s more systemic.  also she’s wanting different kinds of revenge, and she’ s more cynical.

JH: isn’t the first scene also systemic?

W2: I don’t think you know that.  The second scene approaches politics because it’s a wider view …

W3: in the second scene, I actually feel more implicated – because I do register the facts of the scene – and there’s a real potential for me to do something.

JK: for me the first scene is also political, because it provokes my thought, and that seems worthwhile …

W2: but who says political is worthwhile?

DL: also, why is Weil writing about her contemporary situation through 17th century Venice.  What changes when it’s a political system you can relate to?

W2: but it’s at such a distance.  She chooses Venice somewhat arbitrarily … it’s a general situation made very personal, and in the second scene we have a personal scene made general.

W3: Can we compare these scenes to our initial definitions?

DL: is theatre that talks about historical circumstances political?

W2: sure – shakespeare

DL: but sometimes you do those plays straight, sometimes you dress them up.

W4/BD: isn’t it about not trusting your audience?

JH: you can also save a lot of money by just having everyone wear a suit.

W5/AML: but you’re all saying both scenes are political –

M1: I agree that the first scene is a personal story – but I think for Weil there’s a relation between the inner world and engagement.  Poltical thinking and political action for her aren’t far apart.


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