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Letter: Casting for a white Othello

Sir: David Lister's article ("Can it be wrong to `black up' for Othello?", 7 August) about casting Othello attributes the reluctance of theatre companies to cast white actors in the role in part to political correctness.

In America, the home of political correctness, there have been experiments with casting black actors as Iago as well as Othello. But the most radical solution so far will be tried next month in Washington at the Shakespeare Theatre, probably America's finest Shakespeare company. Patrick Stewart will play Othello, but he will be the only white actor in the cast. It may strike some as nothing more than a gimmick, but as a way of exploring how race functions in the play it seems to me a brilliant idea.


Trinity Hall, Cambridge