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A Pranzo da Babette (Babette's Feast)

A Pranzo da Babette (Babette's Feast)
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A Pranzo da Babette, by Karen Blixen--the extraordinary Danish female writer who led a variegated life, culminating in her best-known work Out of Africa--is a play about religiosity, generosity, love, strict social mores, artistic humbleness, and hospitality. Filippa and Martine, two unmarried, Christian sisters in their 50s whose father was a founding pastor of a now stagnant Christian sect, live in a remote village when one day, a French woman named Babette knocks on their door. Armed with a reference letter from Achille Papin, Filippa's suitor from youth, Babette explains that she is wanted on grounds of being a counterrevolutionary in Paris, and that Achille endorses her as a housekeeper. The sisters provide Babette refuge, and for fourteen years, Babette serves them as their cook, until Babette discovers that she has won 10,000 francs in the lottery. Rather than using the winnings to return home, Babette chooses to repay the sisters' kindness by holding a sumptuous banquet to honor their father's 100th birthday. The lunch, however, not only provides a feast for eyes and titillation for the taste buds, but also food for thought.
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