Nadia Oh Soo, Maureen Corrigan, Ghana discussed on Fresh Air Weekend

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

I want to thank you so much for talking with us and thank you for making news of the world which I enjoyed so much. Paul Greengrass. It's really been a pleasure. Thanks a lot. Paul Greengrass directed the new film News of the World, starring Tom Hanks. It's currently playing in theaters and is available on premium video on demand. We recorded our interview January 12th. Nadia Oh Soo is a Whiting award winning writer and urban planner. Her new memoir, Aftershocks delves deep into the fault lines of her own racial identity and family story. Book critic Maureen Corrigan has this review. When Nadia a wuss, who was seven years old and living in Rome, with her father, stepmother, younger sister and baby half brother. Two events occurred on the same day that up ended her world. The first was a disaster. She didn't experience personally but heard about on the radio. Ah, catastrophic earthquake in Armenia where her mother's family had lived before they sought refuge in America. The second was the sudden appearance of her mother, standing nervously at the front door, gripping a pair of red balloons in her hands. A wuss who hadn't seen her mother for three years. But now there, she Woz along with her silence. Second husband They've been vacationing in Italy. Her mother whisk Nadia and her sister off for a day of fun before she vanished again. As happens, especially in the minds of Children, those two events became sod erred together in memory. Here's how was who puts it in her new memoir. When I was seven, my mother showed up with an earthquake and red balloons. I remember her shaking hands and I remember the shaking earth. In me private and seismic tremors cannot be separated. Ah wusses, lyrical and tough memoir is called aftershocks. And though it first it may seem like an overly dramatic conceit for a wuss. Ooh, to tell the story of her life in terms of tremors, seismic shock waves and fault lines, Those metaphors quickly come to seem apt. Even restrained. A rooster's memoir is a classic search for identity story, one. That's complicated by the fact that the ground beneath a wusses feet is so unstable. A wuss is out of the picture. Mother is white and Armenian American. Her beloved father is black from Ghana. His work with the United Nations gave Nadia and her siblings a cosmopolitan upbringing. Italy, England, Ghana, Ethiopia, Uganda. But no fix sense of home. Being bi racial intensified a wusses apartness. And then there are the abandonments that fractured a wuss is life one I've mentioned already. Her mother's unexplained departure when Nadia was four. That's followed by the death of her father when she's 13 and almost simultaneously the refusal of her mother to take in her and her sister. Instead a wuss who lived tempestuous Lee with her stepmother until she left for college in New York, where not surprisingly, in her late twenties, she experienced a breakdown. A wuss who devotes a portion of this memoir to surveying the ruptured histories of the many countries she's connected to. But it's her striking personal story and charged language that makes aftershocks compelling. Speaking of her father's death, a wuss who comes to realize that grief is slow, internal bleeding. Reflecting on the stories she'd heard about the opposition of her father's family and Ghana to his marriage to her white mother. Ah, Woo suk passes on this critical folk adage. Any river loses its identity when entering the sea. Feeling her breakdown approaching a looser, describe stumbling out of the speeding purgatory of her subway train running into her apartment and spending seven mostly sleepless days, rocking in a ratty blue chair. She picked up off the street. There. She forces herself to confront questions about my up ended dislocated body and mind about the geography and geology of my experience about who I Woz and how I'd ended up in the blue chair about finding my way out of it. Aftershocks, A wuss whose father had told her on the day of the Armenian earthquake are the Earth's delayed reaction to stress. Wusses breakdown is one kind of aftershock. This well wrought, often powerful memoir is another. Maureen Corrigan teaches literature at Georgetown University. She reviewed aftershocks by Nadia, who sue Coming up some facts and myths about exercise. We talk with Harvard Professor Daniel Lieberman, author of the new book Exercised, Why Something We never evolved to do is healthy and rewarding. I'm Terry Gross. And this is fresh air. Weekend.

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