Below we review 6 information about the play that sparked controversy, from its first show until the last hours, especially since the title may not reflect the content that reached the audience.
The play, which was shown in Paris in November 1946, is based on Sartre’s notes on visits to the United States of America, and was inspired by the Scottsboro case that took place in that city in 1931 in which nine black men accused of assaulting two prostitutes were punished.
2- Sartre, in his play, criticized racism and the class system in American society in a sarcastic manner, telling the story of the white prostitute, the negro accused of assaulting her, and the rich white man who committed the crime.
3- The play consists of one act and two paintings, and this play is based on the heroine “Lizzie”, an American prostitute, in herself a remnant of the love of goodness and truth. A crime, but Al-Abyad’s cousin Farid, who is also one of her clients, asks her to testify that Al-Abyad killed the nigger when he tried to rape her in order to defend her. from succumbing.
4- When she goes with “Fred” to her house, she finds another nigger fleeing in her bathroom, fleeing from the eggs, so “Fard” does what his cousin did, and kills the Negro, and “Lizzy” revolts and snatches the pistol from him to shoot him, but “Fred” tempts her with promises. And he will give her a beautiful house on the river bank, and he will be her constant customer three times a week, so she gives the pistol, and silences this virtuous prostitute, and stands before the judge for murder, to take the case in a different direction.
5- Sartre wrote a new ending to fit the play that was shown in the Soviet Union with the movie that was released in 1952, and in this new ending a watershed point appeared in racism and class discrimination, rejecting Lizzie’s false testimony.
6- The writer said in his comment regarding the amendments, “I know that a lot of the working class of young people watched this play and were disappointed by its sad ending, and I also know that the only thing that gives cause for optimism is the audience’s need to cling to life.” He also criticized the heroic decision of the character. The main theme and the happy ending of the play is that the play reflects the reality of racism in America in 1930.