Actor Ossie Davis (1917–2005) turned playwright with his 1961 play, Purlie Victorious, which satirized segregation. His characters, clichéd to the point of disturbing absurdity, provoked hilarity from audiences, who, he wrote, might “for the moment” share “the same point of view.” Laughter, he believed, could foster “mutual respect . . . on which all other relations including the struggle for freedom must ultimately depend.” The 1970 musical Purlie won acclaim, but Davis felt it lacked subtlety.