On the eve of Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Election, four hyper-intelligent Cambridge residents find that -- despite their best intentions upon broaching the subject -- the topic of race is a treacherous one, full of stumbles and wrong turns. Brian, a neuroscientist, is studying the brain’s responses to race and its societal implications. Ginny, a psychiatrist, is studying low-income Asian-American women’s reaction to stress. Jackson, a young doctor, has opened a clinic for low-income patients. Valerie, a talented actor, is struggling to make ends meet by working as a maid. Through bright, funny dialogue and fast-paced vignettes, playwright Lydia Diamond (Broadway’s Stick Fly) sets brings her quartet of complicated characters to vibrant life. As they each bull-headedly pursue their professional and personal goals, they find that issues of self-awareness, identity, and race are stumbling blocks that even “smart people” can’t seem to avoid.
Smart People guide sections