As You Like It
William Shakespeare Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2021 Library of Congress PR2878.A8 | Dewey Decimal 812.6
Actor and director David Ivers presents As You Like It, as you’d like to hear it today. Presenting a new translation of Shakespeare into contemporary English, Ivers reimagines Shakespeare’s comedy from an actor’s point of view. Analyzing the play line by line to uncover the meaning of every joke, pun, and witty aside, Ivers repurposes Shakespeare’s language while maintaining an homage to the original rhythm, cadence, and structure. An accomplished actor and director, and a lifelong lover of the Bard, Ivers is the perfect writer to bring As You Like It into the present moment.
This translation of As You Like It was written as part of the Play On! Shakespeare project, an ambitious undertaking from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival that commissioned new translations of 39 Shakespeare plays. These translations present the Bard’s work in language accessible to modern audiences while never losing the beauty of Shakespeare’s verse. Enlisting the talents of a diverse group of contemporary playwrights, screenwriters, and dramaturges from diverse backgrounds, this project reenvisions Shakespeare for the twenty-first century. These volumes make these works available for the first time in print—a new First Folio for a new era.
Matt W. Miller University of North Texas Press, 2013 Library of Congress PS3613.I54525C58 2013 | Dewey Decimal 811.6
Cop's Kid: A Milwaukee Memoir
Mel C. Miskimen University of Wisconsin Press, 2003 Library of Congress CT275.M555A3 2003 | Dewey Decimal 977.595044092
B-Day, as it came to be known, finally arrived. It was a Friday. A school day. I identified with Cinderella as I watched Dad get ready for work. Holster, check. Gun, check. Billy club, check. Handcuffs, check. . . . Saturday morning I got up early. Dad was already gone. Back to work. Ushering the Beatles out of town. On the table . . . there were two small bars of soap, slightly used, the words "Coach House Inn" still legible. One book of matches with four missing. And a note from Dad, "From their room." . . . No one else’s dad comes home from work with something that might, just might, have been intimate with a Beatle.
Growing up, Mel Miskimen thought that a gun and handcuffs on the kitchen table were as normal as a gallon of milk and a loaf of Mrs. Karl’s bread. Her father, a Milwaukee cop for almost forty years was part Super Hero (He simply held up his hand and three lanes of traffic came to a screeching halt) and part Supreme Being (He could be anywhere at anytime. I never knew when or where he would pop up.) Miskimen’s memoir, told in humorous vignettes, tells what it was like for a girl growing up with a dad who packed a lunch and packed heat.
Deaf Daughter, Hearing Father
Richard Medugno Gallaudet University Press, 2005 Library of Congress HQ759.913.M438 2005 | Dewey Decimal 306.8740973
When Richard Medugno and his wife Brenda learned in 1993 that their17-month-old daughter Miranda was deaf, they grieved, as many hearing parents do. Soon, however, Medugno seized hold of the need to take positive action for Miranda. Deaf Daughter, Hearing Father recounts the remarkable story of their journey during the past fourteen years.
Medugno first researched the best communication mode for Miranda. Quickly dismissing the speech pathology model, he and his wife chose ASL alone as the best, natural language for Miranda. He surrounded his daughter with opportunities to learn ASL, by arranging to meet deaf individuals and families, and also by hiring deaf babysitters. He also determined to learn ASL himself, to ensure communication with his daughter. As Miranda neared school age, Medugno spearheaded a transcontinental search for exactly the right school for her education. So that Miranda could attend the California School for the Deaf (CSD), the Medugno family moved from Toronto, Canada to Fremont, CA.
In Deaf Daughter, Hearing Father, Medugno shares practical information on many of the common challenges faced by hearing parents. He provides a list of games that hearing and deaf children can play together, an important consideration for many families. His enthusiasm for all possibilities, from exploring the potential of video phones to helping stage CSD musicals, reveals his abiding devotion to Miranda. Such a foundation has enabled her to feel proud, confident, and happy in her pursuits. At the same time, Medugno recognizes that the rewards of having a deaf daughter are far greater than he could have hoped for or imagined.
Perhaps the most accomplished of Austen’s novels, Emma is also, after Pride and Prejudice, her most popular. Film and television adaptations testify to the world’s enduring affection for headstrong, often misguided Emma Woodhouse and her romantic schemes. Emma: An Annotated Edition is an illuminating gift edition that will be treasured by readers.
Through an intensive clinical study of forty incest victims and numerous interviews with professionals in mental health, child protection, and law enforcement, Judith Herman develops a composite picture of the incestuous family. In a new afterword, Herman offers a lucid and thorough overview of the knowledge that has developed about incest and other forms of sexual abuse since this book was first published.
Reviewing the extensive research literature that demonstrates the validity of incest survivors' sometimes repressed and recovered memories, she convincingly challenges the rhetoric and methods of the backlash movement against incest survivors, and the concerted attempt to deny the events they find the courage to describe.
A work of both childhood memory and adult reflection undergirded with scholarly research
Ruth Herskovits Gutmann’s powerful memoir recounts her life not only as a concentration camp inmate and survivor, but also as a sister and daughter. Born in 1928, Gutmann and her twin sister, Eva, escaped the growing Nazi threat in Germany on a Kindertransport to Holland in 1939
Gutmann’s compelling story captures many facets of the Jewish experience in Nazi Germany. She describes her early life in Hannover as the daughter of a prominent and patriotic member of the Jewish community. Her flight on the Kindertransport offers a vivid, firsthand account of that effort to save the children of Jewish families. Her memories of the camps include coming to the attention of Josef Mengele, who often used twins in human experiments. Gutmann writes with moving clarity and nuance about the complex feelings of survivorship.
A Final Reckoning provides not only insights into Gutmann’s own experience as a child in the midst of the atrocities of the Holocaust, but also a window into the lives of those, like her father, who were forced to carry on and comply with the regime that would ultimately bring about their demise.
Mary Lee Coe Fowler was a posthumous child, born after her father, a submarine skipper in the Pacific, was lost at sea in 1943. Her mother quickly remarried into a difficult and troubled relationship, and Mary Lee’s biological father was never mentioned. It was not until her mother died and Mary Lee was a middle-aged adult that she set out to learn not only who her father was, but what happened to him and his crew, and why—and also to confront why she had shied away from asking these questions until it was nearly too late.
Fowler searched through old ships’ logs, letters, and naval communiqués; visited submarine museums, the Naval Academy, and other pertinent sites; interviewed old friends and crew members who knew her dad and mom or served concurrently; and slowly reconstructed the world in which they lived. Beautifully written, Fowler’s memoir reveals what she eventually learned: of the perils and harships of submarine service in wartime, of the tragic irony of how her father’s sub was probably lost, and of the long-term damage experienced by the families of those who do not come home from war.
Mia Leonin spent the first sixteen years of her life believing her father was dead. All she knew of the man came through stories told by her mother. At times he had been a surgeon, at others a psychiatrist. In truth, he had been a fantasy.
Shortly after her sixteenth birthday, Leonin learned from her mother that her father, a Cuban exile, was very much alive and living in Florida. Her attempts to contact him, however, were thwarted until four years later, when she left home in search of her roots.
She meets her father, but trying to discover the truth behind him proves to be a more daunting task. Her journey takes her to Miami, Colombia, and Cuba, and her search for cultural identity leads her to create memories, friendships, and romances. She finds moments of connection and redemption, ending up in Havana not as a cultural tourist but as an illegitimate daughter of Cuba looking for validation. What she discovers is an island bereft of fathers and brimming with paternalism. As she becomes entangled with two different men, she descends further into the Havana of poverty, humiliation, and despair, as well as the ever-inventive city that is as passionate as it is contradictory.
Insightful, imaginative, and often poetic, Havana and Other Missing Fathers is Mia Leonin’s recollection of this journey and her longing to learn more about her origins. In the end, she must learn to accept the answers she discovers as well as the questions that remain.
Louis Bromfield, the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer, established one of the most significant homesteads in Ohio on his Malabar Farm. Today it receives thousands of visitors a year from all over the world; once the site of the wedding of Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall, it was a successful prototype of experimental and conservation farming.
This lively, outspoken, and affectionate memoir preserves all things Louis Bromfield fought for or against in a life marked by surging vitality and gusto. He came from an Ohio family whose roots were in the land before the land was lost. He had his father's love of the land, and from his willful mother a hunger to know the world. From the New York City of theaters, concerts, parties, and novels, and a life in France that his success allowed, he finally returned to Ohio and established a new order for his family and friends, and for his followers, a new orbit into which they were drawn.
Ellen Bromfield Geld wrote a memoir of the man who was Louis Bromfield, father and friend, tyrant and “Boss,” alive always to whatever was worth responding to in people and in places, yet complex and lonely as a writer must essentially be to work at his craft. Now revived in paperback thirty-five years after its first publication, The Heritage remains a moving tribute and the recreation of a remarkable human being.
Translated from the German for the first time, In Her Father's Eyes is the diary of Béla Weichherz, in which he documents the life of his only daughter, Kitty, in prewar Czechoslovakia. Started as a baby book before her birth in 1929, the journal contains frequent entries about the ups and downs of Kitty's childhood, often written in vivid detail. Weichherz included photographs, developmental charts, and Kitty's own drawings to enhance the text. The journal entries stop in early spring 1942, just days before the family's deportation to a Nazi death camp. In its final pages, a recognizable tale of one anonymous life becomes a heartbreaking story about how anti-Semitism and nationalism in Slovakia shattered this normalcy.
In Her Father's Eyes is a moving tale about Jewish life and a father's profound love for his only child. By bridging prewar and wartime periods, the diary also provides a rich context for understanding the history from which the Holocaust emerged.
“I decide that from now on we should listen to him. His lip may be deflated and his left side paralyzed, but he knows. And he has made terrible mistakes. But he knows. He knows. We are lucky that way.”
Lucky That Way, a nuanced, richly engaging memoir, chronicles the joys and tribulations of a daughter who rediscovers her father as he nears the end of his life. Ernie Gerhardt, an artist and teacher, is largely estranged from his five children, but when he suffers a debilitating stroke, his daughter Pamela must fly to Las Vegas to tend to him. When she arrives to find Ernie newly and shockingly fragile, she is hit by an unexpected wave of tenderness.
As she watches over him in intensive care, she recalls turning points in her family history—the early death of her mother and her father’s turn to heavy drinking--and reflects on the idiosyncrasies that make an imperfect and unique family, on what it means to become old, on what happens when parents are no longer the caregivers but the cared-for, and on how a family copes with their responsibility to the elderly.
Written in a crisp, engaging style, the story is less about the drudgery of finding the right mix of medicines, at-home caregivers, and rehabilitation centers and more about the emotional ramifications of caring for the sick under the weight of sometimes flawed attachments.
People make mistakes, grow old, get sick, and pass on from this world. Lucky That Way examines the irritations and comforts of contemporary family bonds. Gerhardt sifts through the complicated, multi-layered relationships for both wry comedy and high drama and records a string of triumphs and mishaps as Ernie and his five adult children struggle to manage his life and find meaning before their time runs out.
The emerging theme of imperfect humans struggling with life's great mysteries will strike a chord of recognition with the tens of thousands of Baby-Boomers and Gen-Xers who are currently facing similar circumstances with their elderly loved ones. Pamela Gerhardt’s heartfelt story about a family coming to terms with their aging father’s illness and imminent death takes readers on an emotional roller coaster that highlights love, loss, humor, and sadness.
"Science claims it will one day be able to eliminate fathers from the equation by mating bone marrow with ovum. When that day comes, I imagine this book, along with a handful of other works (King Lear, Fun Home) will become even more necessary. Herein find the blueprints for the mystery, the maps for the uncharted, the keys to the archetype." —Nick Flynn, author of The Reenactments and Another Bullshit Night in Suck City
"At this moment, I find myself at loose ends, lost in the various vacuums left by my father's dying and my sons' departures out into the voids. Yet this stunning constellation of essays centered me, became for me fine instruments of reckoning of where to stand in the ceaseless entropic dynamic of kin, of paternal keening. These waxing meditations demonstrate the inflationary universe, the heft and velocity of that big ol' nothing. They elegantly fill, with sober hope and the balm of joy, the terrifying, infinite spaces between those waning stars." —Michael Martone, author of Michael Martone and Four for a Quarter
"What an unreachable mystery the father is, preoccupied, unknowable, pervasive. In these fascinating essays, a shared portrait emerges as writers articulate the perpetual puzzle of the father and, with grace and candor, explore what it means to not know him, to never know him. As one voice, these essays investigate the man—his inventories, his myths, his mere traces—who makes up our horizons, who forever shimmers there beyond our collective grasp." —Susanna Sonnenberg, author of Her Last Death and She Matters: A Life in Friendships
Selected from the country's leading literary journals and publications—Crazyhorse, Colorado Review, The Nervous Breakdown, Creative Nonfiction, Georgia Review, Gulf Coast, The Missouri Review, The Normal School, and others—Man in the Moon brings together essays in which sons, daughters, and fathers explore the elusive nature of this intimate relationship and find unique ways to frame and understand it: through astronomy, arachnology, storytelling, map-reading, television, puzzles, DNA, and so on. In the collection's title essay, Bill Capossere considers the inextricable link between his love of astronomy and memories of his father: "The man in the moon is no stranger to me,” he writes. "I have seen his face before, and it is my father's, and his father's, and my own.” Other essays include Dinty Moore's "Son of Mr. Green Jeans: A Meditation on Missing Fathers,” in which Moore lays out an alphabetic investigation of fathers from popular culture—Ward Cleaver, Jim Anderson, Ozzie Nelson—while ruminating on his own absent father and hesitation to become a father himself. In "Plot Variations,” Robin Black attempts to understand, through the lens of teaching fiction to creative writing students, her inability to attend her father's funeral. Deborah Thompson tries to reconcile her pride in her father's pioneering research in plastics and her concerns about their toxic environmental consequences in "When the Future Was Plastic.” At turns painfully familiar, comic, and heartbreaking, the essays in this collection also deliver moments of seari
William Gilmore Simms’s (1806–1870) body of work, a sweeping fictional portrait of the colonial and antebellum South in all its regional diversity, with its literary and intellectual issues, is probably more comprehensive than any other nineteenth-century southern author. Simms’s career began with a short novel, Martin Faber, published in 1833. This Gothic tale is reminiscent of James Hogg’s Confessions of a Sinner and was written four years before Edgar Allan Poe’s “William Wilson.” Narrated in the first person, it is considered a pioneering examination of criminal psychology. Martin seduces then murders Emily so that he might marry another woman, Constance. Martin confesses to his friend and is killed after attempting to stab Constance when she visits him in jail. The book was immediately successful and was well received by the northern media, thus starting Simms’s successful career as a writer, one that would rank him as the only major southern literary figure besides Poe before the Civil War. As with other volumes in the Arkansas Edition of Simms’s work, this volume includes a critical introduction by the editor and a Simms chronology, as well as appendices dealing with textual matters. This edition also includes Simms’s 1829 story, “Confessions of a Murderer,” which was the germ for his first book of fiction.
When winter rain washes away Mary’s chances for a sledding day, she thinks there is no hope for excitement. But with a little imagination and a brimming pantry she soon finds herself caught up in a colorful journey. Together with her father she relives five Alaska adventures, each uniquely inspired by a jar in her pantry. From salmon to blueberries, each lively tale introduces young readers to Mary’s homeland and invites them to learn about how different places can produce different foods.
Featuring brilliant collages from artists Nobu Koch and Clarissa Rizal, Mary’s Wild Winter Feast is a celebration of food, family, and finding fun in unexpected places.
Judy Doenges's brilliant first novel is the deeply affecting story of Robin Simonsen, a girl growing up in the 1960s and 70s on the wrong side of a Chicago suburb. After the death of her young mother, Robin is left with her kind but irresponsible father-a junkman turned drug dealer-and her grandmother, a retired Vegas showgirl, both of whom draw local fixers and ex-cons into the Simonsens' increasingly shady home. Bright, wise, and observant, Robin is the quiet outsider to her hedonistic family, struggling to come to terms with her ardent love for girls.
Trapped in a house scarily alive with a rogues gallery of hapless and often hilarious crooks, misfits, and hangers-on, Robin must look elsewhere for stability, befriending the son of the neighborhood's only African American family-a boy whose unimpeachable manners and flawless grades mask his own sexuality-while falling in love with the high school beauty.
Wry, edgy, and smart, The Most Beautiful Girl in the World offers a new kind of young heroine, one who stands fearlessly at the precipice of her family and her town's self-destruction, defiantly fighting to save herself.
In 1977, while studying journalism at the University of Iowa, Chris Baker gave his grandmother a notebook and asked her to write about her childhood. Years later, long after her death in 1990, he found the tattered yellow notebook. In twenty-nine handwritten pages, the woman he knew as Grandma Covert had recorded her younger life in rural Iowa between 1920 and 1929. Writing about herself from the ages of four to thirteen, Vetra Covert sent a simple message back to her grandson: “That’s just the way it was. Others had it worse. We got by.”
Captivated by this glimpse of a woman very different from the more formidable grandmother of his memory, Chris Baker reframed Vetra’s journal to create a narrative of her childhood and a window into rural Iowa life in the 1920s. Transcribing her words into nine chapters that illuminate home, family, neighbors, school, and social life, he has composed a collection of candid, whimsical, sometimes ornery stories that will resonate with anyone who has ever tried to decipher the lives found in old letters and photos.
Vetra’s was not a romantic little-house-on-the-prairie childhood. She grew up with seven brothers and sisters (every new baby was “a supprise”) in a dilapidated log cabin near a small town now vanished from the Iowa map. Two rooms up, two rooms down, no plumbing, no electricity, holes in the roof and floor so big “you could of throwed a cat through them.” Her father was a bootlegger-farmer who measured his corn yield in gallons, not bushels, a moonshiner occasionally harassed by federal agents. Although family stories now present him as a quaint old-timer, the reality of living with him was much starker.
In his introduction to Vetra’s recollections, Chris Baker reveals the harsh truths underlying her authentic, uncomplaining account. By honoring her legacy, he discovered a newfound respect for her and for her family’s ability to survive despite the devastating forces of poverty, isolation, and the looming Great Depression. Together he and his grandmother have created an enduring chapter in family history.
Interconnected stories depicting the last years of a WWII bomber pilot, his relationship with his daughter as both child and adult, and his drift into infirmity and death.
When life dwindles to its irrevocable conclusion, recollections are illuminated, even unto the grave. Such is the narrative of Paradise Field: A Novel in Stories, whose title is taken from a remote airfield in the American Southwest, and while the father recalls his flying days, his daughter—who nurses the old man—reflects as well.
Pamela Ryder’s stories vary in style and perspective, and time lines overlap as death advances and retreats. This unique and shifting narrative explores the complexities of a relationship in which the father—who has been a high-flying outsider—descends into frailty and becomes dependent upon the daughter he has never really known.
The opening story, “Interment for Yard and Garden,” begins as a simple handbook for Jewish burial and bereavement, although the narrator cannot help but reveal herself and her motives. From there, the telling begins anew and unfolds chronologically, returning to the adult daughter’s childhood: a family vacation in France, the grotesqueries of the dinner table, the shadowy sightings of a father who has flown away.
A final journey takes father and daughter back to the Southwest in search of Paradise Field. Their travels through that desolate landscape foreshadow the father’s ultimate decline, as portrayed in the concluding stories that tell of the uneasy transformation in the bond between them and in the transcendence of his demise. Taken together, the stories in Paradise Field are an eloquent but unsparing depiction of infirmity and death, as well as solace and provocation for anyone who has been left to stand graveside and confront eternity.
Playing with Dynamite
Sharon Harrigan University of Wisconsin Press, 2017 Library of Congress CT275.H385637A3 2022 | Dewey Decimal 306.8742092
Sharon Harrigan’s father was larger than life, a brilliant but troubled man who blew off his hand with dynamite before she was born and died in a mysterious and bizarre accident when she was seven. The story of his death never made sense. How did he really die? And why was she so sure that asking would be dangerous? A series of events compel her to find the answers, collecting other people’s memories and uncovering her own. Her two-year odyssey takes her from Virginia to Detroit to Paris and finally to the wilds of northern Michigan where her father died. There, she discovers the real danger and has to confront her fear.
Playing with Dynamite is about the family secrets that can distance us from each other and the honesty that can bring us closer. It’s about a daughter who goes looking for her father but finds her mother instead. It’s about memory and truth, grieving and growing, and what it means to go home again.
The incestuous affair between the writer Anaïs Nin and her father, the pianist-composer Joaquín Nin, is well documented in the volume of her unexpurgated diary published under the title Incest. What has been missing from that account is Joaquín’s point of view. Reunited: The Correspondence of Anaïs and Joaquín Nin, 1933–1940 presents more than one hundred intimate communications between these two artistic geniuses, revealing not only the dynamics of their complex relationship but also why Anaïs spent her life in a never-ending battle to feel loved, appreciated, and understood.
Reunited collects the correspondence between Anaïs and Joaquín just before, during, and after the affair, which commenced in 1933, twenty years after he had abandoned his ten-year-old daughter and the rest of his family. These letters were long believed to have been destroyed and lost to history. In 2006, however, a folder containing Joaquín’s original letters to his daughter was discovered in Anaïs’s Los Angeles home, along with a second folder of her letters to him. Together, these letters tell the story of an absent father’s attempt to reconnect with his adult daughter and how that rapprochement quickly turned into an illicit sexual relationship.
rough house: a memoir
Tina Ontiveros Oregon State University Press, 2020 Library of Congress CT275.O563A3 2020 | Dewey Decimal 979.092
Tina Ontiveros was born into timber on both sides of the family. Her mother spent summers driving logging trucks for her family’s operation, and her father was the son of an itinerant logger, raised in a variety of lumber towns, as Tina herself would be.
A story of growing up in turmoil, rough house recounts a childhood divided between a charming, mercurial, abusive father in the forests of the Pacific Northwest and a mother struggling with small-town poverty. It is also a story of generational trauma, especially for the women—a story of violent men and societal restrictions, of children not always chosen and frequently raised alone.
Ontiveros’s father, Loyd, looms large. Reflecting on his death and long absence from her life, she writes, “I had this ridiculous hope that I would get to enjoy a functional relationship with my father, on my own terms, now that I was an adult.” In searingly honest, straightforward prose, rough house is her attempt to carve out this relationship, to understand her father and her family from an adult perspective.
While some elements of Ontiveros’s story are universal, others are indelibly grounded in the logging camps of the Pacific Northwest at the end of the twentieth century, as the lumber industry shifted and contracted. Tracing her childhood through the working-class towns and forests of Washington and Oregon, Ontiveros explores themes of love and loss, parents and children, and her own journey to a different kind of adulthood.
In 1986, a group of young Brazilian women started a movement to secure economic rights for rural women and transform women's roles in their homes and communities. Together with activists across the country, they built a new democracy in the wake of a military dictatorship. In Sustaining Activism, Jeffrey W. Rubin and Emma Sokoloff-Rubin tell the behind-the-scenes story of this remarkable movement. As a father-daughter team, they describe the challenges of ethnographic research and the way their collaboration gave them a unique window into a fiery struggle for equality.
Starting in 2002, Rubin and Sokoloff-Rubin traveled together to southern Brazil, where they interviewed activists over the course of ten years. Their vivid descriptions of women’s lives reveal the hard work of sustaining a social movement in the years after initial victories, when the political way forward was no longer clear and the goal of remaking gender roles proved more difficult than activists had ever imagined. Highlighting the tensions within the movement about how best to effect change, Sustaining Activism ultimately shows that democracies need social movements in order to improve people’s lives and create a more just society.
William Shakespeare Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, 2021 Library of Congress PR2878.T4 | Dewey Decimal 822.914
Considered by most scholars to be the last play that Shakespeare wrote, The Tempest is a stormy tale of betrayal and forgiveness. After being banished by his brother Antonio, Prospero harnesses the magic of an otherworldly island full of monsters and spirits to seek revenge. In reworking this play for a twenty-first-century audience, Kenneth Cavander focuses on the humor and the magic in the tale, much of which has largely escaped modern audiences in recent years.
Cavander’s translation of The Tempest, which premiered at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival in 2017, was written as part of the Play On! Shakespeare project, an ambitious undertaking from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival that commissioned new translations of 39 Shakespeare plays. These translations present the Bard’s work in language accessible to modern audiences while never losing the beauty of Shakespeare’s verse. Enlisting the talents of a diverse group of contemporary playwrights, screenwriters, and dramaturges from diverse backgrounds, this project reenvisions Shakespeare for the twenty-first century. These volumes make these works available for the first time in print—a new First Folio for a new era.
Recommended Book in Domestic Violence by DomesticShelters.org
How do you go about caregiving for an ill and elderly parent with a lifelong history of abuse and control, intertwined with expressions of intense love and adoration? How do you reconcile the resulting ambivalence, fear, and anger?
Welcome to Wherever We Are is a meditation on what we hold onto, what we let go of, how we remember others and ultimately how we’re remembered. Deborah Cohan shares her story of caring for her father, a man who was simultaneously loud, gentle, loving and cruel and whose brilliant career as an advertising executive included creating slogans like “Hey, how ‘bout a nice Hawaiian punch?” Wrestling with emotional extremes that characterize abusive relationships, Cohan shows how she navigated life with a man who was at once generous and affectionate, creating magical coat pockets filled with chocolate kisses when she was a little girl, yet who was also prone to searing, vicious remarks like “You’d make my life easier if you’d commit suicide.”
In this gripping memoir, Cohan tells her unique personal story while also weaving in her expertise as a sociologist and domestic abuse counselor to address broader questions related to marriage, violence, divorce, only children, intimacy and loss. A story most of us can relate to as we reckon with past and future choices against the backdrop of complicated family dynamics, Welcome to Wherever We Are is about how we might come to live our own lives better amidst unpredictable changes through grief and healing.
Questions for Discussion (https://d3tto5i5w9ogdd.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/11140346/Cohan_Discussion.docx)
Where Love Leaves Us
Renee Manfredi University of Iowa Press, 1994 Library of Congress PS3563.A469W48 1994 | Dewey Decimal 813.54
These nine superbly crafted stories, set primarily in Pittsburgh's Italian American neighborhoods, concentrate on families, on the poignant nature of father-daughter relationships, and on the fate of those who are refugees from their physical or spiritual communities. “Love is born only out of wreckage,” Manfredi's characters declare bravely. Her vigorous families are both the wrecking crews and the architects of the human foundation.
In “The Projectionist,” a displaced Sicilian is forced to confront the family he lost in war-torn Italy at the same time that his current family is disintegrating; his disillusionment with the American dream overwhelms him when his oldest daughter exchanges Old World values for the hippie-inspired climate of permissiveness. Ten-year-old Elena, in “Bocci,” takes the teachings of her strict Catholic upbringing to the extreme, and it is her devoutness that is cruelly used against her when violence compels her to reject becoming “a nun or a saint.” The father in “Tall Pittsburgh” sends his daughter to charm school at Sears, then enters her in a beauty pageant for tall women. Distraught in spite of her second-place win, he begins to relive his grief over the death of his beautiful wife.
Many of Manfredi's vital, luminous characters are outsiders, dispossessed by their inability to bridge the gap between the self and others, forced to deal with loss through death and lapse of faith, yet always managing to survive despite their place on the bewildering margins. Manfredi reveals an affirmation, finally, that hope is a permanent possession of every human spirit.
This book is an invaluable key to self-understanding. Using examples from her own life and the lives of her clients, as well as from dreams, fairy tales, myths, films, and literature, Linda Schierse Leonard, a Jungian analyst, exposes the wound of the spirit that both men and women of our culture bear—a wound that is grounded in a poor relationship between masculine and feminine principles.
Leonard speculates that when a father is wounded in his own psychological development, he is not able to give his daughter the care and guidance she needs. Inheriting this wound, she may find that her ability to express herself professionally, intellectually, sexually, and socially is impaired. On a broader scale, Leonard discusses how women compensate for cultural devaluation, resorting to passive submission (“the Eternal Girl”), or a defensive imitation of the masculine (“the Armored Amazon”).
The Wounded Woman shows that by understanding the father-daughter wound and working to transform it psychologically, it is possible to achieve a fruitful, caring relationship between men and women, between fathers and daughters, a relationship that honors both the mutuality and the uniqueness of the sexes.
You Got Older: A Play
Clare Barron Northwestern University Press, 2017 Library of Congress PS3602.A837246Y68 2017 | Dewey Decimal 812.6
Winner of a 2015 Obie Award for Playwriting
Mae has returned home to help her father while he undergoes treatment for cancer. But she needs a little help herself. She’s just lost her boyfriend and her job. (It turns out there are consequences to dating your boss . . .) And she’s desperately craving intimacy of any sort. Mae escapes into the the arms of a chain-smoking, imaginary Cowboy who turns her on and ties her up. And she escapes into chatter with her siblings as they attempt to distract and entertain themselves in a hospital waiting room. But ultimately, it’s her deep love for her father that teaches Mae to remain optimistic and ambitious in the face of suffering and that gets her back on track.