Cover photo by Martha B Porter

Plays by Lonnie Carter

Lonnie Carter
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This collection includes three full-length plays: LEMUEL, GULLIVER, and GULLIVER REDUX, collectively known as THE GULLIVER TRILOGY. THE GULLIVER TRILOGY presents the adventures of its hero, Lemuel Louis Gulliver, Citizen Candidate of the World, an extraordinary everyman, whose picaresque life begins in 1942 on Chicago’s great South Side. Among the issues addressed in LEMUEL are racial segregation, quality of education, assassination of American leaders, abuse of political power, and the needs of the poor and oppressed. In GULLIVER, Lemuel Louis Gulliver travels the globe releasing hostages and securing their votes with the help of Swift Ink, his production company. GULLIVER REDUX explores what happens to Lemuel Louis Gulliver when he is not elected president. He goes into seclusion and winds up in the poorest country in the world, which has a dictator for life, but is led back to his origins, Chicago’s Great South Side and into a confrontation at the Million Men and Women Convocation March.

Plays in This Collection

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Press Quotes


“In his language-drunk play LEMUEL, Lonnie Carter has drawn on everything from the spiraling patter of modernist writers Gertrude Stein and James Joyce, to the embroidered exhortations of Jesse Jackson, to the infectious rhythms of rap, hip-hop and funk … LEMUEL is dazzling chamber theater.” —Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times

“If one man’s story can speak for his time, then Lonnie Carter’s LEMUEL sings it in jumping jive talk, ragged rhythms, choral chanting, hip-hop tongue twisters and the rolling thunder of a civil rights sermon.” —Lawrence Bommer, Chicago Reader


“The verbal and narrative gyrations of a Lonnie Carter play are no more daunting than whipping through a maelstrom on water skis … GULLIVER, Mr Carter’s latest explosion, takes the hero of Jonathan Swift’s satire on a tour that makes American politics seem even more lunatic than it is.” —D J R Bruckner, The New York Times

“GULLIVER at the Berkshire Public Theater shows Carter at his most brilliant … a SKIN OF OUR TEETH for the ’90s.” —Malcolm Johnson, The Hartford Courant


“Lonnie Carter’s GULLIVER TRILOGY screams and laughs like the irreverent love-child of Jonathan Swift, Joan of Arc and George Clinton. The wild maze of Carter’s satiric language propels you on a wondrous journey into the confusion of dark hatreds and heavenly aspirations swirling in America’s heart. As one who gleefully follows Mr Carter’s travels my only advice is, enjoy the trip!” —Neel Keller, Artistic Associate, La Jolla Playhouse

About the Author


  • Lonnie Carter

    Lonnie Carter's play THE ROMANCE OF MAGNO RUBIO received eight Obies for its production by the Ma-Yi Theatre Company in 2003. His plays have been produced by The Yale Repertory Theater, the American Place Theater, Victory Gardens Theater, the Long Wharf Theater, and at the first Asian-American Theater Festival in New York City (2007), the Los Angeles Theater Center's Latino Theater Festival (also 2007) and festivals abroad (the Philippines and Romania). His plays include CHINA CALLS, THE SOVEREIGN STATE OF BOOGEDY BOOGEDY, THE GULLIVER PLAYS (LEMUEL, GULLIVER, AND GULLIVER REDUX, published by Broadway Play Publishing), BABY GLO, WHEATLEY (the Colonial HippeHoppe story of Phillis Wheatley), CONCERTO CHICAGO, and most recently THE LOST BOYS OF SUDAN, produced by the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis (Tony Winner for Best Regional Theatre 2003). THE LOST BOYS (AND GIRL) OF SUDAN was produced by Victory Gardens in 2010. He is a charter member of the Victory Gardens Playwrights' Ensemble. (Victory Gardens was the Tony Winner for Best Regional Theatre 2001). He is an Alumnus of New Dramatists in New York and the Playwrights' Center in Minneapolis. He is a graduate of the Yale School of Drama and Marquette University, a Guggenheim Fellow and twice a Fellow of the National Endowment of the Arts and the Connecticut Commission on the Arts. He has taught at the Yale School of Drama, the Hammerstein Theater Center at Columbia University and the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. His screenplay for THE ROMANCE OF MAGNO RUBIO is in pre-production.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 9/1/1997
Pages 166
ISBN 9780881451344