AUTHORKreitzer, Carson
TITLEThe Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer
PUBLISHERDramatic Publishing
CITYWoodstock
DATE PUBLISHED2006
ISBN1-58342-363-X


In poetic language that often recalls T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” this surreal two-act play depicts the rise and fall of physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer, with a thematic emphasis on conflicts between conscience and scientific advancement. Act I,“Math,” portrays the events occurring from the construction of the atomic bomb to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and introduces the character of Lilith, a Hebrew demon. Act II,“Aftermath,” features Oppenheimer’s post-Nagasaki crisis of conscience as well as the trial that exiles him from Los Alamos for suspected communist ties. Three of the most influential women in Oppenheimer’s life play pivotal roles in the play: his mother; his wife, Kitty; and a former lover, Jean Tatlock, whose communist ties are later cited by the U.S. government as a reason to question Oppenheimer’s loyalty. The play won the Rosenthal New Play Prize, the American Theatre Critics’ Steinberg Citation, and the Stavis Award.


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