Fires in the Mirror: Crown Heights, Brooklyn, and Other Identities. Front Cover. Anna Deavere Smith. Anchor Books/Doubleday, – Drama – pages. : Fires in the Mirror: Crown Heights, Brooklyn and Other Identities ( ): Anna Deavere Smith, Anna Deavere Smith: Books. Fires in the Mirror has ratings and 50 reviews. Cat said: This play made me fall in love with Anna Deavere Smith. Fires in the Mirror focuses on th.

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Apr 06, Jasmine rated it it was amazing. So I read this knowing many of the players at least in passing. The first half of the evening is devoted to some of those who make up the American character, with Smith speaking in their mostly Brooklyn voices: Her way of working is less like that of a conventional Euro-American actor and more like that of African, Native American, and Asian ritualists. But for reasons I’m still trying to understand, I couldn’t work up my usual quotient of rage over the ceremony.

He also engages in racial stereotypes of blacks, commenting that they were drinking beer on the sidewalks and that a black person stole a Lubavitcher Jew’s cellular phone. A Search for the American Character. Fires in the Mirror is thematically ambitious in the sense that it does not confine itself to Brooklyn but uses the situation in Crown Heights to provide more general insights about race relations.

If anything, I want more; I want to see this performed, to see it in its full potency. Through the words of 26 different people, in 29 monologues, Smith explores how and why people signal their identities, how they perceive and respond to people different from themselves, and how barriers between groups can be breached.

These perspectives combine to form a profound explanation of the conflicts between the different Crown Heights communities.

Fires in the Mirror – Wikipedia

Smith, Anna Deavere, Fires in the Mirror: Return to Book Page. Cato is a deeply traumatized man with a “pronounced West Indian accent. Angela Davis is amna speaker in the only scene in the section “Race. The United Solo Theatre Festival board awarded her with uAward for outstanding solo performer during the inaugural edition in November Anna Deavere Smith born September 18, is an American actress, playwright, and professor.


Fires in the Mirror

Robert Brustein, “Awards vs. I would have loved to have seen the rest of the play performed by Smith because she did a good job performing in one scene, but unfortunately that was not the case.

Wolfe and starred Anna Firs Smith herself. The music is meant to pair with the author’s background or the essence of each monologue.

This play made me fall in love with Anna Deavere Smith. A Search for American Charactermade up of a series of plays that combine journalism with dramatic performance. The monologues makes reference to slavery and the Holocaust, the often-fraught relationships between the two ethnic groups and the police, as well as the perceptions of the relationships between each other. She slightly changed her appearance and mannerisms for each character. Deavere-Smith is one of my favorite play-wrights, as well as actresses.

Home Arts Educational magazines Fires in the Mirror. Also by Anna Deavere Smith.

Smith tries to reveal both Black and Jewish view of the event and the truth of the Crown Height incident that happened where a little Black boy was killed by a car; and a Jewish man was stabbed and died.

The rioting died down by August 23, but tensions between blacks and Lubavitchers remained high. Sonny Carson then describes his connection with the black youth community and his motivation for leading them in activism against the white power structure.

Jul 29, Rani rated it really liked it Shelves: Meanwhile, black characters, including Leonard Jeffries, Sonny Carson, Minister Conrad Mohammed, the anonymous young man from “Wa Wa Wa,” and the Reverend Al Sharpton, tend either to group Jews together with dominant non-Jewish white culture or to blame Jews specifically for the oppression of blacks.

Mo feels a great deal of anger at black male rappers who demean women and who have a double standard about promiscuity, and she expresses these sentiments in her music and in conversation.

I liked how we were able to view it deavefe both perspectives. Rice was involved in the riots, first as a skeptic of those preaching peace, and then anns a preacher of peace. The author and her fans seem oblivious to the fact that all lynch mobs have their excuses, yet I don’t see books about exploring the lynch mob and their supporters anns when the victims are black, do you?


Tensions between Jews and blacks in the Crown Heights neighborhood had been running high because of the perception among Lubavitchers that there was a great deal of black anti-Semitism, and because of the perception among blacks that there was a great deal of white racism and that Lubavitchers enjoyed preferential treatment from the police.

Empathy goes beyond sympathy.

Reflecting on race, Angela Davis surprises us by saying she now eeavere that “race is an increasingly obsolete way to construct community,” while a female rapper named “Big Mo” takes after her male counterparts for failing to understand rhythm and poetry.

People on both sides of this conflict can claim to be victims of injustice and prejudice, but the scariest thing about the incident, aside from the absence of leadership and appalling mismanagement by the city, was the tinderbox nature of the community, a condition magnified in Los Hte.

Richard Th then speaks of the rage of black youths in Crown Heights and the lack of role models for black youths. The most harrowing words, though, belong to the survivors of the dead.

Jan 30, Efrain rated it did not like it. Richard Schechner, however, was among those who discussed Smith’s stylistic prowess as a writer and performer. She is currently the artist in residence at the Center for American Progress. Davis is the activist and intellectual whose scene “Rope” discusses the need for a new way of viewing race relations.

For another, although I really do recognize the author’s attempt to create a “Rashamon” style I understand that the play, in which one actress takes on the roles of a dozen or so people – Black, Jewish, and otherwise – affected by the Crown Heights riots, is an impressive piece of theatrical art.