Radical Acts

Collected Political Plays

Four inspiring, bold political plays that bring history alive as theater, from the Bancroft Prize–winning historian, cultural critic, and public intellectual

“Martin Duberman occupies a singularly important place in American culture.” —Catharine R. Stimson, Dean and University Professor, New York University

Best known for his acclaimed biographies of Paul Robeson and Lincoln Kirstein and his provocative books about the gay rights movement, Martin Duberman has also had a long-standing involvement with the theater that began early in his career, when his drama criticism appeared in the Partisan Review and Harper’s, and continued with his own radical, adventurous, and deeply moving plays.

This volume includes four plays: In White America, about the black struggle for freedom and human rights, which became a smash hit and was named the 1963 Best Off-Broadway production of the year; Mother Earth, which brings to vivid life Emma Goldman, one of the twentieth century’s most famous revolutionaries; Posing Naked, the heartbreaking story of Smith College professor Newton Arvin, the most prominent (closeted) gay literary critic of his day; and Visions of Kerouac, which captures the beat era—from Kerouac’s ambition-filled early years, crisscrossing the country with pals like Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, to the later years of isolation and alcoholism. This edition makes these four politically charged plays available to a new generation.

Books by Martin Duberman

Waiting to Land
A (Mostly) Political Memoir, 1985-2008

Martin Duberman

Hold Tight Gently
Michael Callen, Essex Hemphill, and the Battlefield of AIDS

Martin Duberman

A Saving Remnant
The Radical Lives of Barbara Deming and David McReynolds

Martin Duberman

Howard Zinn
A Life on the Left

Martin Duberman