Piese de Archibald MacLeish

Air Raid
In a small town people are busy and happy at work and play. The women chatter and gossip and sing; the lovers murmur; the children shout in play. But they are warned of a possible attack. The sound of an enemy plane cuts through the air. Planes circle over the town, nearer and nearer. As the women rush into the square, the attack is launched. The climax is tremendously moving.
In a corner inside an enormous circus tent, two vendors, Mr. Zuss and Nickles, begin the play-within-a-play by assuming the roles of God and Satan, respectively. They watch J.B., a wealthy banker, describe his prosperity as a just reward for his faithfulness to God. Scorning, Nickles challenges Zuss that J.B. will curse God if his life is ruined. The two observe as J.B.'s children and property are destroyed in horrible accidents and the former millionaire takes to the streets. J.B. is visited by three Comforters representing History, Science, and Religion. They offer contradicting explanations for his plight. He declines to believe any of them, instead calling out to God to show him the just cause for his punishment. When finally confronted by the circus vendors, J.B. refuses to accept Nickles' urging toward suicide to spite God or Zuss' offer of his old life in exchange for quiet obedience to religion. Instead, he takes solace in his wife Sarah and the new life they will create together.
The drama is set during the bank panic of 1933 and concerns the fall of the world's richest man, a banker named McGafferty.
The Fall of the City
An announcer is broadcasting from the square of a city. A crowd has gathered to witness the repeated appearance at noon each day of a dead woman. It is expected she will speak. On this day she does, prophesying: "The city of masterless men / Will take a master./ There will be shouting then:/ Blood after!" After her disappearance a messenger announces the arrival on the coast of a Conqueror. An orator makes a spirited address, urging the people not to oppose him. A second messenger announces his advance. Priests urge the people to take refuge with their gods. Fires set by the Conquerer appear on the hills beyond the city. The conqueror enters the square dressed in armor, his helmet closed. The people fall on their faces. The Conquerer mounts a platform, opens his helmet and the announcer sees that the helmet is empty, but the people do not. As the Conquerer raises his arm, they cheer like troops at a victory.
The Secret of Freedom
Joe and Jill go along their quiet way until the day a badly needed school bond, which they worked so hard on, is voted down by an overwhelming majority. Bitterly concerned about what this means for their children's education, they begin to question the attitudes of the people and a way of life that would allow such a thing to happen. Their search for answers runs into the cynicism of today's youth, the hard "mole-eye-view" of one man's realism, the blind optimism of another. They find hope in the person of the philosophical town librarian, who sees the secret of freedom as "each man's courage to believe. To believe in himself, his town…the future of the country." Back at his home, Joe thinks he finally has the secret: "Courage…to dream your dream and do your duty." Strengthened by this, he and Jill set out in earnest to work for another school bond vote, and this time they are going to win.

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Biografie Archibald MacLeish 

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Archibald MacLeish

Archibald MacLeish s-a nascut la data de 7 mai 1892 in Glencoe, Illinois, SUA.

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