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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A Lubavitcher resident of Crown Heights, Ms. Smith tries to emulate through the use of lines, ellipses, and other notation, exactly how things were said in each interview.

Fires in the Mirror by Anna Deavere Smith | : Books

After PBS produced an adapted version of the play for television inbroadening the influence of the work, positive reviews began to appear in periodicals with wide circulations. Instead, identity can be formed and altered by a neighborhood such as Crown Heights; smitj is why the subtitle of Smith’s play, “Crown Heights, Brooklyn and Other Identities,” suggests that Crown Heights is an identity in itself and that a resident of the neighborhood incorporates their geographical area into their sense of self.

This European concept of racial identity is meaningful only through a differentiation from other races. She is currently the artist in residence at the Center for American Progress.

Fires in the Mirror |

Tge was trying to pound him. Smith composed Fires in the Mirror by confronting in person those most deeply involved—both the famous and the ordinary. After enjoying marked success in his private education, Jeffries worked and studied in Europe and Africa and then took a position as professor of African American studies at the City University of New York.

She slightly changed her appearance and mannerisms for each character. Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Anna Deavere Smith has a lot of opposing side of the event where a Black person has a totally different perspective of the death of the even than a Jewish person. Jan 21, Pages Buy.


The author of the book did research and she also interviewed members of each community to get their perspective on this incidence and also why are they participating. In her play Fires in the Mirror smmith, first produced in New York City inSmith distills these interviews into monologues by twenty-six different characters, each of whom provides an important and differing view on the situation in Crown Heights.

A resident of Firds Heights, Mr. It was the usual display of egotism, ecstasy, and entropy.

Days of rioting ensued, exposing to national scrutiny the depth of the racial deqvere in Crown Heights.

The daughter of an elementary school principal and a coffee merchant, she was the oldest of five children. Yet, Jewish people were are more easily able to assimilate in American society because of their skin color.

Fires in the Mirror

I hated reading this book too, in fact, this one was deaverw than Twilight. Robert Sherman then contends that the English language is insufficient for describing and understanding race relations. In conventional acting a performer develops a character by reading a play text written before rehearsals begin, improvising situations amna on the dramatic situation depicted deaverd the play, and slowly coming to understand the external social situation and the internal emotional state of the character—Hamlet, Hedda Gabler, whoever.

Mar 11, Jennifer Collins rated it really liked it Shelves: Reverend Canon Doctor Heron Sam then describes his opposing view of the two events, full of resentment that the Devere Grand Rebbe’s entourage was reckless and unconcerned about having killed Gavin Cato.

The conflict between the blacks and the jews is very relatable, because in this world, there is a lot of racial tension between races. Articles needing cleanup from August All pages needing cleanup Cleanup tagged articles without a reason field from August Wikipedia pages needing cleanup from August I thought it would be dated.

Smith presented a first workshop production of the play in December at George Wolfe’s Festival of New Voices [2]. The characters consistently provide their perspectives on whether racial harmony is possible in the United States, and many discuss how to anna about achieving this goal.

This adds emphasis to the fact that this play is very immediate and real.


It is a hybrid of theater and journalism. However the different perspectives between the Hassidic Jews and Black population of Crown Heights were interesting. 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.

Richard Schechner, however, was among those who discussed Smith’s stylistic prowess as a writer and performer.

The music ranges from black hip hop to Jewish chants. The characters in these scenes vary widely in their opinions about the themes of the play, based on their backgrounds, personalities, politics, and ties to the situation.

The main subject of Smith’s commentary in Fires in the Mirror is the specific historical event of the racial tension and violence in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Oct 24, Rebecca added it Recommends it for: I understand mirtor 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.

Black folks sure don’t get enraged when they are the perpetrators of violent crime against the elderly yet they go bonkers when a Jewish guy commits a car accident?

Schechner, Richard, “Anna Deavere Smith: Inin the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, New Yorka member of the Lubavitch branch of Hasidic Judaism lost control of his car, jumped the curb, and killed a seven-year-old black child.

Of course, whether or not the play would be so powerful without some of that extra understanding Jewish characters such as Rabbi Joseph Spielman, Michael Miller, and Reuven Ostrov do not acknowledge any community ties with blacks and identify black anti-Semitism with historic anti-Jewish massacres in Germany and Russia.