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The Catonsville NineAn American Story$
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Shawn Francis Peters

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199827855

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199827855.001.0001

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The Trial of the Catonsville Nine

The Trial of the Catonsville Nine

(p.293) 24 The Trial of the Catonsville Nine
The Catonsville Nine

Shawn Francis Peters

Oxford University Press

The witnessing of the Catonsville Nine has been evoked in a diverse array of cultural forms that have kept the memory of their protest alive for the last forty years. But the most important and enduring cultural depiction of the Catonsville Nine essentially was rendered by the activists themselves. Midway through 1969, Dan Berrigan contacted all of his accomplices with the news that he had been negotiating with Boston's Beacon Press to publish “an edited version of the Catonsville Nine Court Record.” Before the book was published, a copy of the galleys of The Trial of the Catonsville Nine wound up in the hands of director Gordon Davidson, who was quickly earning a formidable reputation for directing plays addressing significant contemporary social and political issues. Essentially using Berrigan's text as a theatrical script, Davidson decided to stage The Trial of the Catonsville Nine as part of the “New Theater for Now” series at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. Over the last four decades, The Trial of the Catonsville Nine has been performed all over the world. Actor Gregory Peck also obtained the screen rights for The Trial of the Catonsville Nine which was screened at the Cannes Film Festival in the spring of 1972.

Keywords:   Catonsville Nine, Dan Berrigan, Gregory Peck, Cannes Film Festival, plays, Gordon Davidson

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