The African American Cultural Center invites you to spend an evening watching Little Fires Everywhere, a miniseries starring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington based on the bestselling novel by Celeste Ng. The program will take place over Zoom every Thursday night from 6–7:30 p.m. for eight weeks starting Feb. 4 and ending on March 25, 2021. All members of the NC State community are welcome.
We chose the Little Fires Everywhere miniseries adaptation not purely for its entertainment value but because it dives into issues surrounding race far more than the original source material. In Celeste Ng’s novel, the character Mia Warren is an artist, single mother and newcomer to town who finds herself in conflict with Elena Richardson, a wealthy, white, suburban mother. However, Ng never defined Mia’s race in the novel, whereas in the TV adaptation, Mia is a Black woman. This change further complicates the dynamic between Mia and Elena and brings up interesting and relevant questions about race, class, and feminism. This is why, after watching each hour-long episode, participants are encouraged to stick around and unpack their thoughts.
While these discussions will be casual and organic in nature, the novel, Sing, Unburied Sing by Jesmyn Ward, the Women’s Center’s spring book club pick, will inform the underlying framework. These two stories both tackle issues regarding race and class, and have quite a few overlapping themes and ideas, such as motherhood, white feminism and trauma theory. While the Women’s Center’s book club and the AACC’s virtual watch parties are separate events (and participants are by no means required to read Ward’s novel), we intentionally chose this book as a framework for the Little Fires Everywhere discussions. By identifying common ideas between the stories, we hope to contribute intentionally to a larger conversation on campus about these issues.
Whether you are simply interested in hanging out and watching a TV show or you are excited about diving deeper into social issues, we welcome you to join us on Feb. 4, 2021 for the first episode of Little Fires Everywhere.
- Register at go.ncsu.edu/littlefires.