How I Learned to Drive by Paula VogelThe 1950s pop music accompanying Lil Bits excursion down memory lane cannot drown out the ghosts of her past. Sweet recollections of driving with her beloved uncle intermingle with lessons about the darker sides of life. Balmy evenings are fraught with danger; seductions happen anywhere. Lil Bit navigates a narrow path between the demands of family and her own sense of right and wrong.
how i learned to drive
The guy finally utters those three little words that the girl has needed to hear. And her face lights up like candles on a birthday cake. How many variations on that scene have you experienced at the theater or the movies? Let me qualify that. He needs her to smile.
Vogel received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for the work. The story follows the strained, sexual relationship between Li'l Bit and her aunt's husband, Uncle Peck, from her pre-adolescence through her teenage years into college and beyond. Using the metaphor of driving and the issues of pedophilia , incest , and misogyny , the play explores the ideas of control and manipulation. The play tells the story of a woman nicknamed Li'l Bit as she comes to terms with her sexually abusive relationship with her Uncle Peck throughout her adolescence. Aside from Li'l Bit and Uncle Peck, a Greek Chorus of three is on hand to play all of the other characters in their lives. The script is a memory play told largely out of chronological order, with the first scene taking place in in a parking lot in rural Maryland.
Site Search Navigation
HathiTrust Digital Library., A man with multiple accusers sits in the White House, while a man who was banned from an Alabama shopping mall for predatory behavior has run for the United States Senate. Metoo ripples through our awareness, even as older women and men face the reality that their careers, their ambitions, and their visibility have already been impacted by that power for decades.
In How I Learned to Drive , a woman nicknamed "Lil Bit" recalls memories of emotional manipulation and sexual molestation, all of which are tied together with driving lessons. When Uncle Peck volunteers to teach his niece how to drive, he uses the private time as an opportunity to take advantage of the girl. Much of the story is told in reverse, starting with the protagonist in her teen years and echoing back to the first occurrence of molestation when she is only eleven years old. As the chair of Yale's Playwriting Department, Paula Vogel hopes that each of her students will embrace originality. In an interview on YouTube, Vogel seeks playwrights who are "fearless and want to experiment, who want to make sure that they never write the same play twice. Because the play strives not to preach in the style of an "ABC After School Special," there's a sense of intentional moral ambiguity spread throughout the play. How old were you?
Vogel's acclaimed new play, How I Learned to Drive takes audiences on a journey that is both tender and disturbing, funny and heartbreaking. Exquisitely acted by Mary-Louise Parker , David Morse and a three-person ensemble, the play examines the obsessive relationship between a teen-age girl known as Li'l Bit and her uncle by marriage, a courtly man named Peck. Her inspiration for the play was Vladimir Nabokov's novel Lolita. I couldn't stop thinking about what would happen if a woman wrote the story from Lolita's point of view. In a smartly structured series of scenes that goes backward and forward in time, Li'l Bit narrates her life story, then steps into the action with Uncle Peck and various members of their extended family.