The divine: a play for Sarah Bernhardt Spark Story by: Jordan Saag

The Spatial experience

I attended The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt on a dreary Sunday afternoon. The Constans theater served as a shelter from earthly elements, and as I entered the lobby, sculptures, pictures, and other works of art captured my eye creating an ambiance of culture and class. As I took my seat, I became aware of the intricate sets and backgrounds created for the play, indicating the hard work and dedication of the cast. Due to the small size of the theater, I felt secluded enough to be comfortable and enjoy the acting and plot of the play. As in any situation contemplating our definitions of the good life, place and home are essential to feeling safe and secure in one's own skin.

The Social Experience

While attending the play, I sat next to my friend Kenneth. The presence of a friend allows for quite a different viewing experience as opposed to watching the play with strangers. For example, my friend and I exchanged commentary and criticism both during intermission and after the play. This interaction forced us to be analytical while watching the play and overall enhanced our understanding of the themes and plot as a whole. As in any social gathering, the presence of a welcomed friend makes for a more memorable, happy experience, and is essential in obtaining the good life.

The cultural and intellectual experience

Taking place in the early 20th century, The Divine: A play for Sarah Bernhardt, takes a deliberate focus on the child labor scandals of the industrial revolution. In the first act we see Talbot's little brother Leo, a poor industrial worker, who suffers under terrible conditions for horrible pay. Throughout this era, child labor was very common. It was not until political reform and the progressive movement of the 1920's and 30's did we see the proper safety precautions we are now used to. In my experience, I started working from a fairly young age. At 13, I became an umpire for the local little league baseball team. Although it was not close to the horrible conditions Leo suffered under. It did teach me quite a bit of responsibility, something very important in adulthood and in obtaining a good life.

The emotional experience

The Divine: A play for Sarah Bernhardt, excels in putting some of the problems we experience every day in perspective. In a sense, this process of realizing the advantages we have today in comparison with the hardships of the past is katharsis. The play truly opened my eyes to the real world problems kids my age had to go through only a few generations ago. Now, I am able to pin point what I take for advantage in my life and make an effort to "come clean" and begin searching for the good life.

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