Pictured above: (L to R) Andrew Price Carlile and Javier Carmona in Man of the People/Photo: Man of the People
Editor’s Note: This is an expression by Yasmin Zacaria Mikhaiel in response to Man of the People in a poetic form; it is followed by information about the work and process.
Man of the People by Dolores Diaz is a play that follows the true story of John Brinkley, a “doctor” that grew infamous/famous via his supposed cure of erectile dysfunction. His solution? Swapping a man’s testicles with a goat’s.
Something to be said
When everyone is convinced they’re right
but everyone is so very wrong
1920’s never looked so bad
prohibition in the background
but the laws should have been against him
husband, not father
long con for the coin
but not of the people
a home of science
tables, tools and bottles;
radio, records and lies
Male desperation breeds nonsense
goat glands galore
across the land
damn radio show
cure or con
placebo to some
death to others
Who to the rescue but more men?
reason comes but truth is far behind
American Medical Association
with a mother
fan of the radio and her own ails
Cat and mouse
or goat and man
the game is clear
and stakes high
Of its time and ours
what you hear is not the truth
subjective combats objective
law and land
one underdeveloped the other over
don’t get caught
In a 1920’s setting, Brinkley’s rise and fall are due to his infectious personality, which he broadcasts across America through his personal radio show. As absurd as it sounds, it’s a situation that’s not too far from home. Brinkley’s not technically breaking any laws. He argues that medicine must start as inventive before innovative. Yet, it’s these ideas, unchecked and unregulated, that lead to death and demise—not justice.
Man of the People performances occur Thursdays through Saturdays at Berger Park Coach House Theatre, 6205 North Sheridan Road, Chicago, Illinois, 60660. October 18th through November 17, 2018. More information can be found through threecatproductions.com, via email at email@example.com and by phone at 312-970-9840.
Yasmin Zacaria Mikhaiel (she/her/hers) is a dramaturg and oral historian based in Chicago. She is a mixed-Persian girl, lover of writing, reading and listening. She consults for many arts and humanities organizations on the art of oral history interviews and prioritizing narrator agency in community-based projects. Yasmin also writes for other arts/culture publications, crafting reviews and pushing for POC representation and equity in theatre. Learn more about her and her work at her portfolio, or follow her on Instagram.
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