My Name Is Rachel Corrie (NHB Modern Plays)
eBook - ePub

My Name Is Rachel Corrie (NHB Modern Plays)

(Young Vic edition)

Rachel Corrie, Alan Rickman, Katherine Viner

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eBook - ePub

My Name Is Rachel Corrie (NHB Modern Plays)

(Young Vic edition)

Rachel Corrie, Alan Rickman, Katherine Viner

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About This Book

March 2003. The Gaza Strip. 23-year-old Rachel Corrie stands between a Palestinian house and an armoured bulldozer.

Meet the heroine behind the headlines. Edited by Alan Rickman and Katharine Viner and based on the writings of Rachel Corrie herself, this play captures the enduring idealism, blazing eloquence and sardonic wit of her vivid diary entries.

First seen at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in 2005, My Name Is Rachel Corrie was revived in a new production at the Young Vic, London, in 2017, directed by Josh Roche, winner of the JMK Young Directors Award 2017.

'Powerful, thought-provoking, deeply moving' - Telegraph

'Funny, passionate, bristling with idealism and luminously intelligent, Corrie emerges as a bona fide hero for this brutalised world of ours' - Time Out

'A deeply moving personal testimony... Theatre can't change the world. But what it can do, when it's as good as this, is to send us out enriched by other people's passionate concern' - Guardian

'Deeply moving' - Independent

'Extraordinary power' - Time Out

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Rachel Corrie
was born in Olympia, Washington, USA, on April 10th, 1979.
Before completing her studies at The Evergreen State College in Olympia she joined other foreign nationals working for the International Solidarity Movement in Gaza on January 25th, 2003.
This text has been edited from her journals and e-mails.
Olympia, Washington. A bedroom. Clothes, books everywhere. RACHEL lies on top of it all.
Every morning I wake up in my red bedroom that seemed like genius when I painted it, but looks more and more like carnage these days. I blink for a minute. I get ready to write down some dreams or a page in my diary or draw some very important maps. And then the ceiling tries to devour me.
I wriggle around under my comforter trying to find a ball point, a Crayola, anything fast. I can hear the ceiling spit and gnash above me. Waiting for me to look, because if I look, it can eat me.
And I struggle for some socks and some boxers so I can make a run for it – but I haven't done laundry in a month and the other girl who lives in my room when I'm not here – the bad one who tends the garden of dirty cups and throws all the clothes around and tips over the ashtrays – the bad other girl hid all my pens while I was sleeping.
And I try. I try to look at my fingers. I try to look at the floor with all the fashion magazines left by the bad other girl, to find one pen – just one pen. But I can't imagine where any pens might be, and trying to imagine, I get off guard for a minute and my eyes roll up towards the sky and I'm fucked now – I'm fucked – ’cause there is no sky. There's that ceiling up there and it has me now – ’cause I'm looking at it and it's going to rip me to pieces.
She sits and faces us.
I am a creator of intricately decorated bedrooms. Each time I move, I spend weeks painting, gluing things to my walls, choosing the precise pictures of goddesses and art postcards. This is a labour of love, and I become completely immersed in it.
I wonder why I didn't notice the awfulness of my room before.
I am inside a terrifying mirror.
I glued things to the wall. My God, I glued things to my wall.
Touching the pictures, picking up books.
The question is always where to start the story. That's the first question. Trying to find a beginning, trying to impose order on the great psychotic fast-forward merry-go-round, and trying to impose order is the first step toward ending up in a park somewhere, painted blue, singing ‘Row, row, row your boat’ to an audience of saggy-lipped junkies and business people munching oat-bran muffins.
And that's how this story ends, good buddy, so if you are concerned with the logic and sequence of things and the crescendo of suspense up to a good shocker of an ending, you best be getting back to your video game and your amassing wealth. Leave the meaningless details to the poets and the photographers.
And they're all meaningless details, my friend.
She finds a journal and turns the pages.
My name is Rachel Corrie. I am twelve years old. I was born on April 10th, 1979 in Olympia, Washington, to my mother and father, Craig and Cindy Corrie, a brother, Chris, a sister, Sarah, and a really old cat named Phoebe.
I grew. I learned to spell cat, to read little books. When I was five I discovered boys, which made my life a little more difficult. Just a little, and a lot more interesting.
In second grade there were classroom rules hanging from the ceiling. The only one I can remember now seems like it would be a good rule for life. ‘Everyone must feel safe.’ Safe to be themselves, physically safe, safe to say what they think, just safe. That's the best rule I can think of.
Now I'm in middle school. I guess I've grown up a little, it's all relative anyway, nine years is as long as forty years depending on how long you've lived. I stole that from my dad.
Sometimes I think my dad is the wisest person in the world.
You understand none of this is really true, because what I wrote today is true, but you'll read it by tomorrow, or the next day, and my whole life will be different. Is that how life is, a new draft for every day, a new view for each hour?
When I graduated fifth grade we had a list of questions for our yearbook. One of them was ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ Everyone wrote something like ‘doctor’ or ‘astronaut’ or ‘Spiderman,’ and then you turned the page and there was my five-paragraph manifesto on the million things I wanted to be, from wandering poet to first woman president. That was real cute in fifth grade but when it's ten years later, I'm a junior in college, and I still don't have the conviction to cross ‘Spiderman’ off my list – well, you can imagine it gets a little nerve-wracking.
My mother used to walk with me to the bottom of the hill to wait for the car pool – I was nervous that I would do it wrong. I remember, or maybe I invent, that occasionally we decided on the way, I wasn't going to school. We stole time that way. She took me to lunch. We went to bookstores in Seattle. She bought me books on love and delinquency, and although she never said it straight out, I'm sure she was hoping I'd become a bank robber. My mother would never admit it, but she wanted me exactly how I turned out – scattered and deviant and too loud.
She changes her clothes.
I'm building the world myself and putting new hats on everybody one by one, before I go out, so wrinkled, I have to grab the great big flaccid flaps of my eyebrows and lift them off my cheekbones in order to see. Before I go out I'm gonna have people in tutus, cops wearing sombreros, stockbrokers with Viking hats, priests with panties on their heads. In the world I'm building, everybody shouts hello to everybody else from their car windows. People have speakers attached to their chests that pour out music so you can tell from a distance what mood they're in, and they won't be too chicken to get naked when the rain comes. And first ladies carry handcuffs and bull whips and presidents wear metal collars. Big metal collars with tight leashes.
She emerges. Barefoot.
Okay. I'm Rachel. Sometimes I wear ripped blue jeans. Sometimes I wear polyester. Sometimes I take off all my clothes and swim naked at the beach. I don't believe in fate but my astrological sign is Aries, the ram, and my sign on the Chinese zodiac is the sheep, and the name Rachel means sheep but I've got a fire in my belly. It used to be such a big loud blazing fire that I couldn't hear anybody else over it. So I talked a lot and I didn't listen too much. Then I went to middle school where you gotta be cool and you gotta be strong and tough, and I tried real hard to be cool. But luckily, luckily I happened to get a free trip to Russia and I saw another country for the first time.
In the streets and the alleys it was an obstacle course of garbage and mud and graffiti. There was coal dust on the snow, everything was dirty. And they always said to us, ‘How do ...

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