A New Jerusalem

A New Jerusalem

The Clegg family at the centre of this drama is entirely fictional, but like all families it has its history and habits, its squabbles and secrets. They are in flux, change is upon them and they are struggling to cope, to hold onto their sense of who they are and how to live that out in the context of their very specific time and place.

Who are these characters? We see boys trying to become men, a brother trying to be something he fundamentally doubts and a grandmother trying to carry on being herself. They are all imitating, copying, maintaining and deceiving themselves. And during the course of the drama they also toy with letting go of long held beliefs, values, dreams and secrets.

A New Jerusalem reveal how complicated, messy and treacherous notions of identity are and how we can both be defined by a single category (mother, brother, English), and yet also still understand ourselves to be so much more than that.

A New Jerusalem

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4 Replies to “A New Jerusalem”

  1. Reading it again today. A very accurate depiction of racial and cultural tensions in recent years. The attack in Woolwich occurred over two years ago, but is still fresh in public memory.

  2. I would like it for the reader to examine the undercurrents of these attacks, and also how the community deals with prejudice. We need to understand the roots of hatred to eradicate it.

  3. This play, although set in Britain, deals with what has become a relevant issue globally. Such prejudice can be seen in all multicultural societies, and therefore, people across the world will be able to relate to the feelings of insecurity and doubts about national identity.

  4. I agree, this is what happens throughout the globe. I guess the hardest thing for any writer is to relate to the thing they abhor the most. In this case it was racism and xenophobia. But those characters need to be expressed too, for the conflict, “the discord”, resides in them and so to write about tolerance and understanding would mean little if we don’t give everyone, including those who peddle ignorance, a voice. And without a voice, there is no dialogue, without dialogue the issues becomes more dangerous.

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