Date of Award
Extracted directly for performance from Victor Hugo's novel of the same name, the themes of justice and democracy found in the wildly popular musical Les Misérables are intentionally universal. As foundational philosophies of the United States, those motifs are especially powerful to Americans. The finale song Do You Hear the People Sing? particularly prescribes rule by the people – democracy – as a medicine for the disease of injustice. This paper will juxtapose the contemporary United States with the world of the play Les Mis, through a window of democracy. A deliberate director can tailor a production specifically for an American audience, connecting concepts of the U.S. justice and governmental system with the events of the musical.