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In the Country of Women : : a Memoir

Straight, Susan. Book - 2019 921 Straight, Susan, Adult Book / Nonfiction / Biography / General / Straight, Susan 2 On Shelf No requests on this item Community Rating: 5 out of 5

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Call Number: 921 Straight, Susan, Adult Book / Nonfiction / Biography / General / Straight, Susan
On Shelf At: Downtown Library, Pittsfield Branch

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Adult Book / Nonfiction / Biography / General / Straight, Susan 4-week checkout On Shelf

Prologue: Homerica -- Part I. Little House in the Thistles ; The First Bullet ; The Dance ; The Country Squire ; Nurse-in-Charge ; Hey Now ; Olympia - One Can Could Get You Pregnant ; Daisy Belle ; Driveway #1 - The First Love Letter -- Part II. Castas ; Mulato ; The Second Bullet ; Fruitful ; The Toast ; Fruitful #2 -- Part III. Run the World ; Wild Things ; Pig ; The Santa Ana River ; A Secondhand Lonely ; Dew Point - Pack of Four ; Love Strands ; Crosses and Missions ; Coach - Driveway #2 ; The Batmobile ; The Yard Couch ; Grizzly ; Nine ; Al Green - Driveway #1, The Second Love Letter ; Travels with My Ex in the Time of Revenue -- Part IV. Switzerland, Loveland, Cuddlyland ; Bring Me Your Smartest Girl ; Kin - White House #1 ; A Place of Style and Refuge - White House #2 ; Letter to My Nephew - Our Dungeon Shook (After James Baldwin) ; American Human Not Interested ; Braid/Züpfe ; Ancestry ; Saphina ; The Work of Women - Evaporation and Memory, white House #3 -- Acknowledgements
"In inland Southern California, near the desert and the Mexican border, Susan Straight, a self-proclaimed book nerd, and Dwayne Sims, an African American basketball player, started dating in high school. After college, they married and drove to Amherst, Massachusetts, where Straight met her teacher and mentor, James Baldwin, who encouraged her to write. Once back in Riverside, at driveway barbecues and fish fries with the large, close-knit Sims family, Straight--and eventually her three daughters--heard for decades the stories of Dwayne's female ancestors. Some women escaped violence in post-slavery Tennessee, some escaped murder in Jim Crow Mississippi, and some fled abusive men. Straight's mother-in-law, Alberta Sims, is the descendant at the heart of this memoir. Susan's family, too, reflects the hardship and resilience of women pushing onward--from Switzerland, Canada, and the Colorado Rockies to California. A Pakistani word, biraderi, is one Straight uses to define a complex system of kinship and clan--those who become your family. An entire community helped raise her daughters. Of her three girls, now grown and working in museums and the entertainment industry, Straight writes, "The daughters of our ancestors carry in their blood at least three continents. We are not about borders. We are about love and survival." In the Country of Women is a valuable social history and a personal narrative that reads like a love song to America and indomitable women." -- from Jacket.


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Discovered a new favorite author submitted by clessure on August 8, 2021, 12:22pm This book is a memoir – so it’s personal – but it is also a great journey that touches on many different topics: US migration, race, family dynamics, relationships, parenting and more. The different chapters explore the incredible that brought the author and her daughters to where they grew up – Riverside, California. It is the first book by Susan Straight that I've read, but it will not be my last. Wonderful writing along with significant historical research – it is book to savor as she takes you on a journey across the US and beyond.

Place, race and family submitted by mowjac on January 24, 2022, 8:59pm I really enjoyed this memoir. The whole book is oriented around the author telling her daughters their family history—which is also American history, with faces, not facts. It’s also an ode to Southern California and the changes time and industry brought to it. My only complaint is that I wish there had been a family tree to help me keep track of everyone.

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New York : Catapult, [2019]
Year Published: 2019
Description: 363 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Language: English
Format: Book


Straight, Susan.
Straight, Susan -- Family.
Authors, American -- Biography.
Women authors -- Biography.