[Marxism] Seven Jewish Children - a Play for Gaza

Dbachmozart at aol.com Dbachmozart at aol.com
Thu Apr 2 07:19:28 MDT 2009





Caryl Churchill, a renowned British playwright and feminist, wrote a short  
play called:  Seven Jewish Children--A Play for Gaza.  It premiered in  London 
in February and in New York on March 16th, in an event marking the  
anniversary of Rachel Corrie's death. It was produced at the New York Theatre  Workshop, 
which was the center of a controversy three years ago when it backed  off 
from its decision to produce the play "My Name is Rachel Corrie."

The  entire text of the play has been printed by the Guardian newspaper , and 
has  been reproduced below.  Churchill is giving away free rights to produce 
the  show as long as a collection is made for medical relief in Gaza.

For more  context and analysis of the play, Tony Kushner and Alissa Solomon, 
who also  presided over one of the readings and subsequent discussions in New 
York, have a  piece well worth the read in the Nation here: 
 
http://www.thenation.com/doc/20090413/kushner_solomon/3

But if you  only have a few minutes, just read the play itself.


_http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2009/feb/26/caryl-churchill-seven-jewish-chil
dren-play-gaza_ 
(http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2009/feb/26/caryl-churchill-seven-jewish-children-play-gaza) 



Seven Jewish Children - a Play for Gaza

Caryl Churchill

No  children appear in the play. The speakers are adults, the parents and if 
you  like other relations of the children. The lines can be shared out in any 
way you  like among those characters. The characters are different in each 
small scene as  the time and child are different.

1

Tell her it's a  game

Tell her it's serious

But don't frighten  her

Don't tell her they'll kill her

Tell her it's important  to be quiet

Tell her she'll have cake if she's good

Tell her to  curl up as if she's in bed

But not to sing.

Tell her not to come  out

Tell her not to come out even if she hears  shouting

Don't frighten her

Tell her not to come out even if  she hears nothing for a long time

Tell her we'll come and find  her

Tell her we'll be here all the time.

Tell her something about  the men

Tell her they're bad in the game

Tell her it's a  story

Tell her they'll go away

Tell her she can make them go away  if she keeps still

By magic

But not to  sing.


2


Tell her this is a photograph of her grandmother,  her uncles and me

Tell her her uncles died

Don't tell her  they were killed

Tell her they were killed

Don't frighten  her.

Tell her her grandmother was clever

Don't tell her what  they did

Tell her she was brave

Tell her she taught me how to make  cakes

Don't tell her what they did

Tell her  something

Tell her more when she's older.

Tell her there were  people who hated jews

Don't tell her

Tell her it's over  now

Tell her there are still people who hate jews

Tell her there  are people who love jews

Don't tell her to think jews or not  jews

Tell her more when she's older

Tell her how many when she's  older

Tell her it was before she was born and she's not in  danger

Don't tell her there's any question of danger.

Tell  her we love her

Tell her dead or alive her family all love  her

Tell her her grandmother would be proud of  her.


3


Don't tell her we're going forever

Tell  her she can write to her friends, tell her her friends can maybe come 
and  visit

Tell her it's sunny there

Tell her we're going  home

Tell her it's the land God gave us

Don't tell her  religion

Tell her her great great great great lots of greats grandad  lived there

Don't tell her he was driven out

Tell her, of  course tell her, tell her everyone was driven out and the 
country is  waiting
for us to come home

Don't tell her she doesn't belong  here

Tell her of course she likes it here but she'll like it there even  more.

Tell her it's an adventure

Tell her no one will tease  her

Tell her she'll have new friends

Tell her she can take her  toys

Don't tell her she can take all her toys

Tell her she's  a special girl

Tell her about  Jerusalem.

4


Don't tell her who they are

Tell her  something

Tell her they're bedouin, they travel about

Tell her  about camels in the desert and dates

Tell her they live in  tents

Tell her this wasn't their home

Don't tell her home,  not home, tell her they're going away

Don't tell her they  don't like her

Tell her to be careful.

Don't tell her  who used to live in this house

No but don't tell her her great great  grandfather used to live in this house

No but don't tell her Arabs  used to sleep in her bedroom.

Tell her not to be rude to them

Tell  her not to be frightened

Don't tell her she cant play with the  children

Don't tell her she can have them in the house.

Tell  her they have plenty of friends and family

Tell her for miles and miles  all round they have lands of their own

Tell her again this is our  promised land.

Don't tell her they said it was a land without  people

Don't tell her I wouldn't have come if I'd known.

Tell  her maybe we can share.

Don't tell her  that.


5


Tell her we won

Tell her her brother's a  hero

Tell her how big their armies are

Tell her we turned them  back

Tell her we're fighters

Tell her we've got new  land.


6


Don't tell her

Don't tell her the  trouble about the swimming pool

Tell her it's our water, we have the  right

Tell her it's not the water for their fields

Don't tell  her anything about water.

Don't tell her about the  bulldozer

Don't tell her not to look at the  bulldozer

Don't tell her it was knocking the house down

Tell  her it's a building site

Don't tell her anything about  bulldozers.

Don't tell her about the queues at the  checkpoint

Tell her we'll be there in no time

Don't tell her  anything she doesn't ask

Don't tell her the boy was  shot

Don't tell her anything.

Tell her we're making new farms  in the desert

Don't tell her about the olive trees

Tell her  we're building new towns in the wilderness.

Don't tell her they  throw stones

Tell her they're not much good against  tanks

Don't tell her that.

Don't tell her they set off  bombs in cafes

Tell her, tell her they set off bombs in cafes

Tell  her to be careful

Don't frighten her.

Tell her we need the  wall to keep us safe

Tell her they want to drive us into the  sea

Tell her they don't 

Tell her they want to drive us into the  sea.

Tell her we kill far more of them

Don't tell her  that

Tell her that

Tell her we're stronger

Tell her we're  entitled

Tell her they don't understand anything except  violence

Tell her we want peace

Tell her we're going  swimming.


7


Tell her she cant watch the news

Tell  her she can watch cartoons

Tell her she can stay up late and watch  Friends.

Tell her they're attacking with  rockets

Don't frighten her

Tell her only a few of us have  been killed

Tell her the army has come to our  defence

Don't tell her her cousin refused to serve in the  army.

Don't tell her how many of them have been killed

Tell  her the Hamas fighters have been killed

Tell her they're  terrorists

Tell her they're filth

Don't 

Don't tell  her about the family of dead girls

Tell her you cant believe what you see  on television

Tell her we killed the babies by  mistake

Don't tell her anything about the army

Tell her, tell  her about the army, tell her to be proud of the army. Tell 
her about the family  of dead girls, tell her their names why not, tell her the 
whole world knows why  shouldn't she know? tell her there's dead babies, did 
she see babies? tell her  she's got nothing to be ashamed of. Tell her they did 
it to themselves. Tell her  they want their children killed to make people 
sorry for them, tell her I'm not  sorry for them, tell her not to be sorry for 
them, tell her we're the ones to be  sorry for, tell her they cant talk 
suffering to us. Tell her we're the iron fist  now, tell her it's the fog of war, 
tell her we wont stop killing them till we're  safe, tell her I laughed when I 
saw the dead policemen, tell her they're animals  living in rubble now, tell her 
I wouldn't care if we wiped them out, the world  would hate us is the only 
thing, tell her I don't care if the world hates  us, tell her we're better 
haters, tell her we're chosen people, tell her I look  at one of their children
covered in blood and what do I feel? tell her all I  feel is happy it's not 
her.

Don't tell her that.

Tell her we  love her.

Don't frighten her.

© Caryl Churchill Ltd,  2009

Please feel free to download the play. This play can be read or  performed 
anywhere by any number of people. Should you wish to apply for rights,  please 
contact ruth at casarotto.co.uk, who will license the performances free of  charge 
provided that no admission fee is charged and that a collection is taken  at 
each performance for Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP), 33a Islington Park  
Street, London N1 1 QB. Tel: 020-7226 4114. Website: map-uk.org. Email:  
info at map-uk.org

Hard copies can be obtained from Nick Hern Books, 14  Larden Road, London W3 
7ST. Email: info at nickhernbooks.demon.co.uk

The  text must be performed as written. No changes of any kind can be made to 
the  title or text of the play.




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