This responsibility to know the difference between offense and harm becomes more complicated when we leave the world of professional comedy for Stanford, but using this framework of determining who is the target of a joke is useful. Use humor in art or entertainment responsibly, and think before crossing the line of controversy and offense into more hurtful territory.
I spoke with Friedman — composer of “Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson” — about his writing process, his body of work and his take on the cancellation of his production at Stanford.
The problem, of course, is that FoHo could have just as easily framed this event as an instance of stunning insensitivity on the part of ATF, and that nobody but the FoHo staff itself oversees the editorial direction it takes when interpreting an episode on campus. It’s that the FoHo’s slant (like that of any source) inevitably shapes public opinion on a given issue, making the fact that it includes one at all a serious problem. The news is for reporting, and Opinion pages are for editorializing.
“We were really hoping to find a way to do the show in a way that would promote dialogue and not hurt people, but it would not be possible. None of us wanted to feel responsible for hurting other students or making them feel attacked in a place that’s supposed to be their home.”
It’s only fall quarter but the student theater groups on campus are already working on the many exciting shows they’ll be producing this quarter. Below are five of the shows that we at Arts & Life are looking forward to seeing between now and Thanksgiving break.