THE DOUBT – John Patrick Shanley

Written by John Patrick Shanley, an American from the Bronx, this play speaks of something that, unfortunately, is a reality in my country and in its people´s mentality: suspicion and gossip! And how virtue, innocence, justice have been replaced as values for their very own opposite. Ambition and talent to manipulate the truth are rewarded in today´s world, everywhere. Nowadays, the truth is only the version which holds best.
The moral behavior of a priest is questioned here. One suspects throughout the entire play, that he has used his power and position to abuse a 12 year old boy at his care. But one is never 100% sure. Anyway the play is so much more than that…
It speaks of people´s vicious tendency for gossip and how gossip destroys one´s reputation and life. But it also addresses several other subjects, such as, 12 year old boys are no longer innocent children, sometimes they are fully aware of their own sexuality, which is something we are hardly prepared to admit and is quite disturbing. Furthermore, we witness here how women are completely powerless in a world where all hierarchies and systems remain male made and are male dominated. This play is also about women´s lack of power and impotency to change things. Specially interesting, this gender note underlies the whole play, but goes unnoticed by critics most of the time.
How gossip, suspicion and intolerance are today’s reality is stressed through the raising tension between the characters, brilliantly played by Diogo Infante and Eunice Munoz, representing the best of two acting generations.
Written in 2004, this play won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the Drama Desk Award and the Tony Award for Best Play.

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