Theater Abroad: The Character Speaks Out

Mining recent history for villains and heroes has turned into a profitable industry. By implying that Pope Pius XII was guilty—at least by omission—of not staying the Nazi slaughter of the German Jews, Playwright Rolf Hochhuth, in The Deputy, racked the stages of Europe and Broadway with controversy. Now another play, In the Matter of J. Robert Oppenheimer, by another German playwright, Heinar Kipphardt, now playing in Berlin and Munich, has become the talk of Europe. One key difference: Pius was dead and unable to refute the charges; J. Robert Oppenheimer, current Director of the Institute for Advanced Studies...

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