Yankee Education

My theatre is doing a show that needs a large black ensemble, and they just lost two of the locals who had planned to be in the show. To make up for the loss they are shifting two Hispanic actors from the resident company into the roles. I joked with one of them, and the director, that they can just consider that they are playing octoroons. They both stared at me, not understanding at all. A quick survey of the nearby people, which included several of the black cast, proved that besides me, one person knew the term, and he was also Southern. Seems to me that any Southern schoolchild is taught enough history to know what that means, but apparently not here. Or is it just that we are so much more race conscious in the South that I still know the term even though it has long since passed out of the lexicon?

1 Response to "Yankee Education"

  • Anonymous Says:

    Any theatre person - southern or northern should know that term, if from nowhere else from the show "Show Boat"- I think what you're dealing with are folks who haven't gotten all the amniotic fluid out of their eyes yet...