The Who & The What

The Who & The What $13

Ayad Akhtar

Published by Dramatists Play Service

2 Male 2 Female

From the author of Disgraced, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama ...

Brilliant Pakistani-American writer Zarina is focused on finishing her novel about women and Islam

The only distraction is her father's insistence at setting her up on a date with Eli - a young convert who pleases both her father's conservative values and Zarina's modern, complicated Muslim identity

Everything seems to be going the way everyone wants

That is until Zarina finishes her book - a fictional accounting of the story in the Quran of the revelation of the veil which portrays a very different version of the Prophet Muhammad than traditions allow

And now the whole family is forced to confront who and what they believe in

This is a passionate and searing look at a family divided by faith, bonded by love, and searching for truth in contemporary America


"The What & the Who explores intergenerational and interfaith conflicts with fluid eloquence and intelligence. Mr. Akhtar writes dialogue that, while often funny and always natural, crackles with ideas and continually reveals undercurrents of tension that ratchet up the emotional stakes" ~ The New York Times

"The What & the Who is to be commended for tackling themes too rarely addressed in contemporary dramas Akhtar is definitely a playwright whose work merits significant attention" ~ The Hollywood Reporter

"Akhtar switches his focus from the work colleagues of Disgraced to families. But he maintains a firm hold on a recurring theme in his work: the crisis of identity and its eventual consequences. Like Zarina's messy, impassioned book, The Who & The What stirs the pot in unexpectedly dramatic ways" ~ Entertainment Weekly


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