Do you have a favorite character so far in the play? What about them draws you into the story?
There’s been a lot of discussion lately, at least on my feed, of the importance or non importance of recognizing the racial history tied to the blues. So, I think it’s important that at this time, we recognize how inherently tied politics and race are to the music we’re listening to. August Wilson’s “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” as a play, is unseverably tied to the issues of politics and race. By now we are through (or should be through) with the first act, and already we’ve encountered economic exploitation, bad police encounters, and issues and fights over education and life knowledge, to name just a few of the topics Wilson’s dealing with. Here are just a few questions to get you started, but feel free to comment on what you think about any major topic Wilson broaches in his work: Why is Wilson making this so prominent in his play? What do you think about his utilization of the stage to make political points? Is he successful? Why or why not? What about these topics he discusses is important to you and why?
What do you make of the play’s dramatic ending? How do you see and judge Levee’s actions?