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Because I Said So: 33 Mothers Write about Children, Sex, Men, Aging, Faith, Race, and Themselvesby Camille Peri
"Mothers Who Think celebrated 'the emphatic telling of mothers' truths,' and in that spirit I declare my truth in 2005 to be that I am suffering from Women's Anthology Fatigue. The subtitle of Because I Said So is '33 Mothers Write About Children, Sex, Men, Aging, Faith, Race & Themselves,' which alone exhausted me." Sandra Tsing Loh, the Atlantic Monthly (read the entire Atlantic Monthly review)
Synopses & Reviews
The challenges facing mothers in the twenty-first century go well beyond tantrum control and potty training. Camille Peri and Kate Moses, the founding editors of Salon.com's "Mothers Who Think" column and the subsequent anthology of the same name, have once again compiled a selection of intimate and fiercely honest essays on the profound issues that affect women and their children.
Because I Said So offers thirty-three unique perspectives on motherhood from such writers as Janet Fitch, Mariane Pearl, Ayelet Waldman, Mary Roach, Rosellen Brown, Mary Morris, and Ana Castillo. Witty and wise, their stories range from the anguish of giving up child custody to the guilt of having sex in an era of sexless marriages; from learning to love the full-speed testosterone chaos of boys to raising girls in a pervasively sexualized culture; from facing racial and religious intolerance to surviving cancer and rap simultaneously. This is the collective voice of real mothers in all their humor, anger, vulnerability, grace, and glory.
"Moses and Peri, who edited Mothers Who Think, an American Book Award-winning anthology based on a Salon.com column, have gathered some 33 talented mothers (including writers Rosellen Brown, Janet Fitch, Ayelet Waldman and Ann Hulbert, among others) discussing aspects of 'real motherhood' today. True, most of their issues — spousal abuse, divorce, cancer, step-parenting, single mothering — aren't new. Some contributors, like Mariane Pearl, the widow of journalist Danny Pearl, have even published their thoughts elsewhere. What's magical about this collection, though, is what happens when such diverse accounts are stitched together in a single volume: a new picture emerges of what it means to be a mother in modern America. Chemo treatments may leave you bald. Your kids may suffer from 'KGOY — kids growing older younger,' and as they test your limits, you may find yourself 'morphing into some authoritarian freak.' If you're black, people may assume you're your own child's nanny. But as one woman discovered traveling solo to Cairo to see a particular set of Roman-era memorial portraits in the Egyptian Museum, the acknowledgment 'of death, of loss, of suffering, as well as of desire and remembered joy' is all 'part of living.' Skip the flowers and candy this Mother's Day, and buy this book instead." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Women will appreciate the humor and candor, and men will gain insight into the stunning challenges of motherhood." Booklist
"The creators of Mothers Who Think have assembled smart, fierce, honest stories that are distinguished by their originality." Chicago Tribune
About the Author
Kate Moses is a former contributing writer for Salon.com and one of the founding editors of Salon's Mothers Who Think. She is also the author of Wintering: A Novel of Sylvia Plath, winner of the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, as well as coeditor, with Camille Peri, of Mothers Who Think: Tales of Real-Life Parenthood. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and two children.
Camille Peri was a founding editor of the Mothers Who Think website at Salon.com and coeditor, with Kate Moses, of the American Book Award?winning anthology Mothers Who Think: Tales of Real-Life Parenthood. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and two sons.
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