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The March Sisters Special Event with Carmen Maria Machado and Kate Bolick

  • Germantown Historical Society 5501 Germantown Avenue Philadelphia, PA, 19144 United States (map)

Big Blue Marble invites you to a celebration of All Things Little Women on Tuesday, September 17th.

We’ll be helping to launch the new essay collection The March Sisters: On Life, Death, and Little Women. Published to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the publication of Little Women, four acclaimed authors offer personal reflections on their lifelong engagement with a March sister.

Authors Carmen Maria Machado and Kate Bolick will be hand to share their work. (p.s. - there may be a third - stay tuned!)


The event will be in a most Alcott-y location, the Germantown Historical Society, 5501 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144. This home is a block from where the Alcotts lived in Philadelphia. Period house, period furniture, and even a period-food porch party!


As space is limited in the historic house, this will be a ticketed event. Ticket options include coming to the event, coming to the pre-event porch party, and purchasing the autographed book.

For the 150th anniversary of the publication of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, Kate Bolick, Jenny Zhang, Carmen Maria Machado, and Jane Smiley explore their strong lifelong personal engagement with Alcott's novel--what it has meant to them and why it still matters. Each takes as her subject one of the four March sisters, reflecting on their stories and what they have to teach us about life. Kate Bolick finds parallels in oldest sister Meg's brush with glamour at the Moffats' ball and her own complicated relationship with clothes. Jenny Zhang confesses to liking Jo least among the sisters when she first read the novel as a girl, uncomfortable in finding so much of herself in a character she feared was too unfeminine. Carmen Maria Machado writes about the real-life tragedy of Lizzie Alcott, the inspiration for third sister Beth, and the horror story that can result from not being the author of your own life's narrative. And Jane Smiley rehabilitates the reputation of youngest sister Amy, whom she sees as a modern feminist role model for those of us who are, well, not like the fiery Jo. These four voices come together to form a deep, funny, far-ranging meditation on the power of great literature to shape our lives.

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