A question and answer session after a Friday night performance of Jeremy O. Harris’ controversial Slave Play was interrupted after a white woman accused Harris of racism.
According to Buzzfeed News, the woman “just freaked out,” as stated by a 25-year old theater patron named Sydney. “The videos don’t do it justice. She went off on him…She was screaming at the top of her lungs. She could not handle her own guilt or responsibility in her own feelings, and she demanded that Jeremy help explain and handle her feelings.”
Syndey said the woman raised her hand during the Q&A, but Harris recognized someone else instead. This led to the woman unleashing her tirade on Harris. As has been recorded in a video posted to Twitter, the woman said she “doesn’t want to hear that white people are the f****** plague all the time.”
The woman also said she has been a victim of rape, has been falsely arrested, had her children taken away and was told that “as a white woman [she’s] not good enough to f****** raise them.” She went on to ask, with expletives, how is she not a “marginalized member” of society.
“I never said you aren’t,” replied Harris. “I never once said that you as a white woman were not a marginalized person. But if you heard that in my play, I don’t know what to tell you. Perhaps read it or see it again.”
The woman continued to berate Harris, trying to distinguish herself as a non-problematic white person while simultaneously displaying an inability to deal with white guilt, including her statement of feeling tired of hearing a “whole bunch of stuff about how white people don’t get how racist they are” and about a time period “300 years ago.”
“…You know, I spent my whole life trying to make a f****** solution,” she continued after Harris didn’t have an answer for her as to how to end racism in America.
Harris later posted a video of the exchange on Twitter.
Imma tell my kids this was The Blind Side pic.twitter.com/lAbc9D8KuP
— Jeremy O. Harris (@jeremyoharris) November 30, 2019
Harris told The Washington Post that he fielded the woman’s outburst because “it would have been hypocritical of me as someone who said from the beginning, I want this to be a play that sparked conversations…Rage is a necessary lubricant to discourse.”
Slave Play has created tons of discourse due to the sensitive nature of the plot. In the play, several interracial couples undergo unique therapy where they act out scenes of power and submission in a setting depicting slavery. The play is meant to analyze how race plays into desire, lust and attraction.
Photo: Getty Images
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