Jessica Blank Writing Styles in The Exonerated

Jessica Blank
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The play belongs to the genre known as documentary theater, in which contemporary social issues are explored, often from a leftist or liberal standpoint, by the artful use of nonfiction materials, such as interview and court trial transcripts, speeches, articles, public hearings, and the like. The purpose of documentary theater is to challenge the audience to examine a particular social issue, such as an inequitable political system or social structure, abuse of power by those in authority, or other issues relating to class, race, gender, or sexual orientation.

The authors of The Exonerated interviewed many former death row prisoners and recorded hundreds of hours of audio tapes, which they then converted into typed transcripts. They also studied court transcripts and case files. As they write in the introduction to the play, “We spent countless hours in dusty courthouse record rooms, pawing through thousands of microfiche files and...

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This section contains 290 words
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Buy The Exonerated Study Guide
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