Theater: Tardy Rainbow

The Amen Corner, by James Baldwin, has one negative virtue as compared with his Blues for Mr. Charlie, offered last season: it is not a strident, vulgar, melodramatic polemic on the race question. Those who love to see the tumbrels of social protest roll portentously across the stage will be sorely disappointed. The play also has one positive virtue: Baldwin's autobiographical acquaintance with the Negro evangelical scene. But Amen Corner, a 14-year-old first play, scuttles edgewise through this milieu like a crab, evading dramatic life more successfully than it confronts its characters. Baldwin has yet to learn that drama is really...

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