My play Anatolia Speaks was recently dismissed in a weekly arts publication on the basis that because I am male and not of the country I am writing about, the piece was somehow less valid.
I was deeply amused to read Miss Culkin’s little piece about my play Anatolia Speaks in the last issue of Vue. This young lady evidently believes that all of that play’s very real educational and moral intentions can be decried because I have had the temerity to write a monologue about a Bosnian woman when I am neither female nor of that deeply tragic country. I congratulate her for stumbling upon this vital critical tool. What cleansing vistas it opens up! We can now dismiss those vile old men Sophocles and Euripides (the latter of whom was probably transgendered, and thus might be excused). Down with Kyd, Marlowe, Webster! Away with that pretender Shakespeare, whose Hamlet can now be thrown onto the rubbish heap of literature, for it is very doubtful that the so-called Bard of Avon had even a Danish cousin. Damn Moliere (that wasn’t even his REAL NAME)! Onto the rack with Miller for daring to write about the mad religious witch-hunts of Salem when he himself wasn’t even a Christian! Let us eschew and desecrate Lysistrata, Ophelia, Lady Bracknell, and Blanche Dubois. In the political cleansing of our minds and our literature, let us whitewash, like Pol Pot defacing the street signs in Cambodia with mind-numbing white, all signs of former times, when mere imagination was enough to launch a poem, a play, or a painting.
I look forward to Miss Culkin’s future literary efforts, in which she will no doubt dismiss all the male characters created by Timberlake Wertenbaker, George Eliot, or Judith Thompson.