Synopses & Reviews
One blueprint, two souls. How do you become your own person when there is someone else—your twin—who is exactly the same?
Abigail Pogrebin is a mother, a New Yorker, a writer, a daughter, and a wife, but the role that has most defined her, she knows, is that of identical twin. In One and the Same, she weaves her quest to understand how genetics shape us into a memoir of her own twinship. What does it mean to have a mirror image? How can you be one, singular, unique, as we all like to think we are, when somebody shares your DNA?
In One and the Same Abigail crisscrosses the country and travels the world to explore the relationship between twins, which can range from passionate to bitterly resentful. She interviews football stars Tiki and Ronde Barber, who admit their twinship comes before their marriages; bawdy, self-proclaimed “twin ambassadors” who have created a media business around their twinness; sisters who stopped speaking for three years; and brothers whose shared genetic anomaly wrought unspeakable tragedy. She explores the new science of epigenetics, which shows how the same DNA can yield different results—a moody twin, a happy twin, one who gets cancer, one who doesn’t. She speaks to the twins experts and tries to answer the question parents of twins ask most: Is it better to encourage their closeness or separateness?
Threaded throughout One and the Same are Abigail’s own memories of a buoyant childhood growing up with her twin sister and best friend, Robin. “The Pogrebin Twins” were outgoing, cheerful and hammy, very much alike, and effortlessly close. But hey don’t have the same intimacy anymore, and Abigail traces the bittersweet process of growing apart from someone she thinks of as part of herself.
This is a riveting portrait of twin life by an accomplished journalist who exposes twinship from the inside. It yields fascinating truths about how we become who we are and about the struggle for singularity that defines us all.
From the Hardcover edition.
The author of Stars of David and a twin herself, journalist Abigail Pogrebin offers a poignant and personal look at what it's really like to live with your mirror image and tells the story of many twins who struggle to balance intimacy and individuality.
Writer. Mother. Wife. New Yorker. Abigail Pogrebin is many things, but the one that has defined her most profoundly is “identical twin.” Pogrebin's relationship with her sister, both as children, when they were inseparable, and today, when she longs for that uncomplicated intimacy, inspired her to examine the phenomenon of twinship—to learn how other identical pairs regard their doubleness and what experts are learning about how DNA impacts our sense of identity and shapes our lives.
In One and the Same, Pogrebin presents a tapestry of twinship, weaving science reporting and personal memoir with the revelatory stories of other twins, such as two sisters who stopped speaking for three years; football stars Tiki and Ronde Barber, who admit their twinship comes before their marriages; a pair of bawdy, self-proclaimed “twin ambassadors” who have created a media empire around their twinness; and brothers whose shared genetic anomaly wrought unspeakable tragedy. In this stirring account, Pogrebin shows how living identical is both a celebration of sameness and a struggle for singularity that defines us all.
Journalist Abigail Pogrebin is many things--wife, mother, New Yorker--but the one that has defined her most profoundly is identical twin. As children, she and hersister, Robin, were inseparable. But when Robin began to pull away as an adult, Abigail was left to wonder not only why, but also about the very nature of twinship. What does it mean to have a mirror image? How can you beunique when somebody shares your DNA?
In One and the Same, Abigail sets off on a quest to understand how genetics shape us, crisscrossing the country to explore the variedrelationships between twins, which range from passionate to bitterly resentful. She speaks to the experts and tries to answer the question parents ask most--is it better to encourage their separateness orcloseness? And she paints a riveting portrait of twin life, yielding fascinating truths about how we become who we are.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The author of Stars of David describes her experiences as an identical twin while sharing the stories of twins who have struggled to balance intimacy and individuality, in a personal account that also offers insight into what experts are discovering about the role of DNA in influencing identity.
About the Author
ABIGAIL POGREBIN is the author ofStars of David: Prominent Jews Talk About Being Jewish. A Yale graduate,she has written for many national publications andhas produced pieces for 60 Minutes, Charlie Rose, Bill Moyers, and Fred Friendly. She lives with her husband and two children in Manhattan—as does her identical twin sister, New York Times reporter Robin Pogrebin.
Table of Contents
The mecca : twinsburg -- Embryo to end zone : Tiki and Ronde Barber -- Identicals : a love story -- You deplete me : competition -- Risky business : the shoals of birthing twins -- Twins shock 101 -- Making the break : separation -- And then there was one -- Splitting the difference : when identical twins differ -- Cruel DNA : the Lords -- Me and my shadow : exploring doubleness -- But for her : Pearl and Helen.