An Arts Sampler on Guantanamo

Here is a compendium of examples of Guantánamo in the arts and literature, in the United States and abroad:


 2005: Inside the Wire, by Erik Saar, former U.S. Army intelligence linguist; For God and Country: Faith and Patriotism Under Fire, by James Yee, former U.S. Army Muslim chaplain.

 2006: Guantánamo and the Abuse of Presidential Power, by Joseph Margulies, detainee rights lawyer; Prisonnier 325 Camp Delta, by Nizar Sassi, former detainee, in French and Spanish; Enemy Combatant:A British Muslim's Journey to Guantánamo and Back, by Moazzam Begg, former detainee.

 2007: Bad Men: Guantánamo Bay and the Secret Prisons, by Clive Stafford Smith, detainee rights lawyer; Five Years of My Life, By Murat Kurnaz, former detainee, in German, due out in English early next year; Poems from Guantánamo: The Detainees Speak, edited by Marc Falkoff.


Sicko, Michael Moore's political take on U.S. medicine, brings 9/11 rescue workers on a boat near the base to declare captives rare recipients of universal U.S. healthcare.

The Road to Guantánamo, a 91-minute 2006 docudrama directed by Michael Winterbottom, about three British Muslims who were held at the prison camps for about two years.


The Prisoner of Guantánamo, 2006, by Dan Fesperman, a former Baltimore Sun journalist's thriller from the vantage point of an FBI interrogator.

Guantánamo: A Novel, 2004 in German, 2007 translated to English, by Dorothea Dieckmann, a German essayist and literary critic, is set behind the razor wire in the mind of an imaginary 20-year-old captive named Rashid.


Without Chains, a 2006 song by punk-rock singer Patti Smith based on the tale of a former Guantánamo captive, Murat Kurnaz of Germany.


Guantánamo, a 2004 song by Stephen Coffee of the Virginia-based Harley String Band, which won honorable mention in the Great American Song Contest.

The Devil Went Down to GTMO, Charlie Daniels Band's in situ improvisation that entertained the guards and other troops at the base in 2002. Never recorded.


Jesus: The Guantánamo Years, one-man, one-hour play by Irish comedian Abie Philbin Bowman, which has been staged in Dublin, Belfast, Galway, Edinburgh and this summer in Boston.

Honor Bound, a dance production by Nigel Jamieson staged in collaboration with the Sydney Opera House and Malthouse Theater, Sept. 13-Oct. 1, 2006, Malthouse Theater, Melbourne, Australia, which has since toured to Vienna and Amsterdam.

Guantánamo: Honor Bound to Defend Freedom, a play by Victoria Brittain and Gillian Slovo based on former British captive accounts opened in London in January 2004, played for several months in two theaters, then saw productions in Chicago, San Francisco, New York and Washington.