The Body of an American is the recipient of the 2013 Edward M. Kennedy Prize for Drama Inspired by American History. Read more about the prize here.

The Body of an American speaks to a moment in recent history when a single, stark photograph—of the body of an American soldier dragged from the wreckage of a Blackhawk helicopter through the streets of Mogadishu—reshaped the course of global events. In a story ranging far in time and place, from Rwanda to Afghanistan to the Canadian Arctic, and in powerful, theatrical language, Dan O’Brien explores the ethical and personal consequences of Paul Watson’s photograph, as well as the interplay between political upheaval and the experience of trauma in an age saturated by images and information. Read an excerpt from the play.