Fabulation Or The Re-Education Of Undine

 
 
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Lynn Nottage’s Fabulation or The Re-Education of Undine was published by Dramatists Play Service in 2005, the year after it was originally produced in New York City. Fabulation is a riches to rags social satire about Undine a high-end publicist in modern day Manhattan who must return to her abandoned Brooklyn roots after her ritzy business has been bankrupted by her husband. Fabulation is a comeuppance tale with a comic twist.

THE PLOT

Undine is a successful African-American publicist living in Manhattan. When her husband takes her money, she is forced to return to her former life in Brooklyn, and to deal with her working-class relatives. Although the characters are primarily African-American, and the play is often categorized as an African-American play, most of the content is universal. Nottage may be making a statement about the particular importance of African Americans honoring each other in all social strata and taking pride in their past, but the themes are applicable to many backgrounds and experiences. There is nothing, after all, about Undine that is only relevant to African Americans or even women. She is a person who finds herself in a situation faced by many people the world over and in all eras. The result is an accessible play about confronting uncomfortable personal truths.

CAST & CREW

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RECEPTION

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A NOTE FROM DIRECTOR PATIENCE G. TAWENGWA

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Fabulous Fabulation

When I first read “Fabulation or The Re-Education of Undine” I was drawn in by the similarities which exist between Undine’s self discovery journey and the search for identity for many of us contemporary Africans. Most Africans of my generation have parents who were born and raised in the rural areas of colonial Africa, only after independence were black Africans able to freely move from “Africans only” designated townships to the affluent and formerly all white suburbs. My generation became beneficiaries of a lifestyle and opportunities which our parents never had access to. The multi-racial schools we attended had an english language only policy and we were not allowed to speak our own African languages, that rule created within us a belief that english language and culture were superior and synonymous with education and civilization and our own mother tongue and culture inferior and aligned with being backward. There was a shift in values and to the younger generation non-english speaking rural relatives became “uncool” and their presence in certain social settings elicited a sense of shame. | CONTINUE READING

 

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