Rekindling the Intellectual, Spiritual, Creative legacy of Christians in Culture

Mitzi Aquinas How do we talk about controversial subjects in a pluralistic age given to hostile talk and not reasonable discourse? Does theatre offer unique opportunities for more complex, multilayered viewpoints? The Kindlings Muse roundtable includes Elizabeth Heffron, playwright whose Mitzi's Abortion caused quite a stir in ACT Theatre's 2006 season. Also joining us are Pam Nolte, Seattle actor and co-founder of Taproot Theatre, and Dr. George Scranton, Theatre Professor at Seattle Pacific University. Here is the storyline as described by ACT Theatre. "Mitzi's Abortion is a surprising and compassionate play about a young woman confronting one of life's most difficult and deeply personal decisions in a system determined to make it a political one.Facing a surprise pregnancy, Mitzi embraces motherhood and a future with her baby's father. But when complications collide with deeply-held beliefs, insurance regulations, and varying reactions from those she loves, Mitzi's world is thrown into chaos. As her family and friends try to comfort her in the face of their own discomfort, Saint Thomas Aquinas and a 17th-century midwife join the fray to give Mitzi unexpected support. With humor and honesty, this stunning new play takes a multifaceted look at an extraordinarily powerful and contemporary question."

One Response

  1. After listening to this, I appreciated this artist’s effort at trying to see/show different sides to the abortion issue. But in the end, it seems there’s really only one side being put forth. Sure, situations such as the girl mentioned are heartbreaking, but it’s easy to see where the author stands as she continued to refer to the unborn child as a ‘fetus’ instead of a baby. The jab at Republicans also mentioned was a giveaway as well and she admitted her bias. And what was the portrayal of the church mentioned? Was it a positive one? Or just the usual ‘church people are bad’ approach? (The ‘queer gene’ idea is also one that I’ve not seen any support for medically. So hypothetical situations are being brought up that simply will never happen. But unless you know that, you take it at face value and think it’s a valid point.)

    Also, it seems to be coming at the abortion issue as a ‘religious’ issue. It is not. Neither is it something complicated to figure out. I am not saying that such decisions are easy. Of course they are devastating. I hope to never be in that situation and I feel for those that have gone through it. It’s something I wouldn’t wish on anyone. But an unborn baby is a baby, and that’s where the discussion (and any decisions) needs to start.

    It was mentioned that abortion is a polarizing topic. I agree that there is a lack of listening (not to mention civility!) on both sides. But right and wrong, by nature, is polarizing. Where we need to start is to decide whether an unborn child is as much a child as one that is born. Once that question is settled, other things fall into place. Plays like this can be helpful, but I think we’ve made the issue itself more complicated than it really needs to be.

    (My comments on the play itself are based on this first part of the interview. They are first impressions and subject to change, especially since obviously I have not seen the play, or yet listened to the rest of the interview.)

    Thank you.

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