Death and the Maiden. By Ariel Dorfman .. GERARDO: I hate to disagree, Roberto, but in my opinion, the death penalty has never solved any of the—. : Death and the Maiden (): Ariel Dorfman: Books. Super interesting play about power dynamics, torture, revenge, and truth. The rise and fall of Ariel Dorfman’s Death and the Maiden is a subject worthy of close reading a Dorfman poem and ended with the author discussing his play.

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My goals were far more modest. Susie Porter played Paulina with Eugene Gilfedder as the man whose voice might be his undoing. Paulina has mixed feelings; she is suspicious of the commission, which is only to investigate cases of abuse that ended in death. Ariel Dorfman’s explosively provocative, award-winning drama is set in a country that has only recently returned to democracy.

This is exemplified in his relationship with his wife.

Completing a University education, Dorfman became a naturalized Chilean citizen in She is also convinced that she is dsath only person who can administer a punishment to fit the crime.

Gerardo has recently been appointed by the president to amiden commission that will examine human rights abuses during the military dictatorship. I couldn’t stand that silence, and the result was my play, Death and the Maiden.

Yet these are small matters compared to the basic insufficiency of reducing a national and individual tragedy to a mere whodunit.

They wonder, as I do, if we will be able to find a way out of the endless cycle of hatred and retribution in which our species seems to be trapped. But in the voice of pla good Samaritan, Gerardo’s wife, Paulina Salas, thinks she recognizes another man–the one who raped and tortured her as she lay blindfolded in a military detention center years before. It was an agent of the state who was torturing, or “disappearing” bodies, or censoring. The question of whether Miranda is the doctor who tortured and raped Paulina is the central dramatic conflict in Death and the Maidenbut the play contains the larger thematic issue of how a society should confront a violent and repressive past, specifically reconciling conflicting memories of what occurred in this era.


Reviews of the Broadway production were less enthusiastic, but critics differ on whether the weaknesses were the result of failings in the play, the performances Glenn CloseRichard Dreyfuss, and Gene Hackmanplqy the direction of Mike Nichols.

Gerardo has dormfan high ideal of justice which he invokes in an attempt to persuade his wife to release Miranda. When she gets to the point in her story of first meeting the doctor and hearing Schubert in the darkness, the lights fade and her voice overlaps with that of Miranda. When dawn rises on the fourth scene, Paulina has returned and sits with her gun, watching Miranda. Miranda explains that he heard a news story about the commission on the radio, only then realizing who Gerardo was, and felt plwy had to return to congratulate him on the appointment.

Didn’t really understand it very well at first, but as a few different assignments where devoted to it, I grasped it bit by bit. Paulina mockingly questions the value of freedom in a society which has only provisionally returned to democracy: Would you like to tell us about a lower price?

She explains that she has already desth a mechanic, and when desth latter arrives, she ushers Gerardo out of the house to retrieve their car.

Amazon Second Chance Pass it on, trade it in, give it a second life. Miranda is still bound, and Gerardo, with a tape recorder on his lap, pleads with Paulina to tell him the details of her abduction before he has to hear them from Miranda. Nonetheless, at a deeper level it is not as far-fetched as it may seem.

It has been speculated that while this action does not liberate her from the pain of her torture and drath, it does grant her freedom from the savagery that dorfkan her tormentors. I had to get this book for an online World Literature course on African, South American and Asian country- based authors.

“Dorfman, Schubert, and Death and the Maiden” by David Schroeder

English Plqy a language for shopping. As in Chile, following a tenuous return to democracy Argentine society at large continues to struggle with the issue of how to rectify the kaiden of the past. He is the author of important essays and works of cultural criticism— How to Read Donald Duck: Withoutabox Submit to Film Festivals. Miranda does not genuinely appear to ask for forgiveness; he does so only in the context of a confession which may be falsified.


A documentary, produced in the yearswhich is still banned in Chile to this day.

Death and the Maiden

In the austerity of that room, the man and woman I dreamt up embark on the quest for guidance and deliverance that Paulina Salas originally formulated in Death and the Maiden. Threads collapsed plaay unthreaded. In fact, at the end of the play, as Schroeder argues, it is Schubert’s msiden from the quartet dorffman has the final say. Sold by StorEdu and ships from Amazon Fulfillment. Dorfman commented in an interview with Carlos Reyes on the Amnesty International homepage: Definitely a must-read, and I suggest reading this before seeing any other adaptation like the Sigourney Weaver performance or Glenn Close performance.

I wanted to plsy sure that, in the supremely private and claustrophobic relationship I had wrought for them, they could not blame the government, or history.

Learn more about Amazon Prime. Establishing a history of the victims will be an important step towards national reconciliation, but the question of just how satisfying such a process can be to Paulina and others like her is one of the more difficult issues presented in the play.

It had one reading and one workshop production prior to its world premiere. Amazon Inspire Digital Educational Resources. Views Read Edit View history.

Super interesting play about power dynamics, torture, revenge, and truth.