Tag: arts and culture

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Conservative’s “Hamilton”?

 

Imagine this: The insular world of the Manhattan theater scene is buzzing about an exciting new play by a brilliant outsider. It’s a tour de force of Black acting and true American history, mixed with dazzling dramatic craft and lacerating humor that wins over even its ideological opponents. It’s talked about in The New York Times, touted for theater prizes, and becomes one of the hottest tickets in town. You know this story, right?

But this was all in 1997, eighteen years before “Hamilton” opened. You’ve probably never heard of the hit play I’m about to tell you about. Don’t feel bad, hardly anyone has, and of the hundreds of thousands of smart people who read and talked about it that year, scarcely anyone seems to remember it now. Strange how that happens.

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Mark Twain once observed ““The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter—it’s the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” The same analogy can be applied to the almost right and right principles of “social justice” versus “justice.” “Social Justice” claims to be about fairness, which is a highly […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. “Inherit the Wind” Comes Back Home to the Bible Belt

 

Inherit the Wind, a drama by Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee, tells a highly fictionalized version of the famous Scopes Monkey Trial of 1925. In the real trial, The State of Tennessee v. John Thomas Scopes, a substitute high school teacher was accused of violating Tennessee’s Butler Act, which prohibited teaching human evolution in state-funded schools. But it was not a trial of real facts – it was a phony case manufactured by the American Civil Liberties Union.

When the Butler Act passed, the ACLU lost no time peppering the state with pamphlets offering to defend anyone who violated the Act. The problem was: the Act went unenforced – and was widely understood to be a symbolic political gesture. In fact, Tennessee had another statute that required public schools to use a specific science textbook that did teach human evolution. So, if the ACLU was ever going to challenge the Act in court, they had to manufacture the facts themselves.

The organization found an ally in George Rappleyea, a businessman from the small town of Dayton, Tennessee. During a meeting of local business leaders, Rappleyea convinced the pillars of his community to sponsor the ACLU’s test case in their county. Rappleyea was against the law himself and others supported it, but the primary argument Rappleyea made to his peers was that the media circus around the trial would be great for business. The others agreed. Now they just needed a defendant.

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(Author’s Warning: This is a long-ish piece, representing a lot of ideas brewing in my mind over the last several weeks. Having recently started both a) graduate school and b) coaching a 13-14 Fall Baseball team, my time to post to Ricochet has been virtually nil. So ideas and concerns built up over time. This is […]

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“All art intuitively apprehends coming changes in the collective unconsciousness.” -Carl Jung For 100 years art has been applied as an ideological tool to tear apart the foundations of reality. Now, after a century of devastating folly, there are signs the rituals of deconstruction have hit their expiration date.  Preview Open

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What is provocative art in a hyper-politicized age? Preview Open

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Here’s a quiz the smallest child can take. What are the most important colors of the season right now? (Choose as many as you wish.) Preview Open

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You see them in gift shops and bookstores. Some are in cardboard frames with pieces of chocolate behind each colorful door. Others are flannel or quilted, with little pockets holding puffy decorations. A “calendar” might even be splashed across the whole side of a building. Whether rectangular, shaped like a Christmas tree, or die-cut as […]

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