Photo: "Before" by Eschipul taken from the Photo Search bar provided by the Adobe Spark website
"The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt" considers several key issues from the time period and place of this story. Lack of voice in the work forces and horrific work conditions, corruption in the organization of control, and excess power of the rule makers and enforcers were all large and demanding elements that existed within the Quebec City in 1905. However, prior to this performance that educated me on these very real and present issues that still currently exist, I did not know of the unjust conditions of this Canadian city at that time. Previously, all that came to mind was the idea of the Church ruling over the people and the government. However, the portrayal of these characters brought these issues to life- a face to the "overworked worker", a name to the abused, and a backstory to each person. Even though these are imaginary characters who are brought to life in a world as real as the audience can imagine it, these are cold and hard issues that continue to plague societies even today. After experiencing "The Divine" I came to realize just how much working conditions and laws have changed in my nation, and how much they may not have changed in others. Although there have been many developments in the world dealing with technology, health, and living conditions, these issues will most likely never leave societies completely. Even in the case that they are eradicated, the faint whiff of what once was reality will always mark communities, for history is harsh and does not forget. Even though I might not currently experience the frustrating cruelties and repercussions of these issues in my community, the disturbing idea remains that somewhere, somehow, someone is living and working in the horrid conditions illustrated by this play. Though those people might not have a voice to speak to me directly, this play is their outcry. This script outlines their misery. And this production shouts out to the millions for them, slowly churning a revolution to stop the corruption, the injustice, and help those who need it the most.