Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Harriet Brown

Harriet Brown is the author of Body of Truth and Brave Girl Eating. She has edited two anthologies and has written for the New York Times Magazine, O Magazine, Psychology Today, Prevention, and many other publications. She is a professor of magazine journalism at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.

Brown's new book is Shadow Daughter: A Memoir of Estrangement.

Recently I asked the author about what she was reading. Her reply:
I’m always reading several books at a time. I just finished The Other Einstein, by Marie Benedict, a work of historical fiction about Albert Einstein’s first wife, Mitza Maric. She was a brilliant physicist and mathematician who was completely overshadowed by her famous husband. She contributed a lot to Einstein’s work, especially the theory of relativity; some suggest it was actually her theory. We’ll never know for sure. But what we do know is that Mitza gave up her own chance at a career to support her husband’s, and he repaid her by having an affair with his cousin and ultimately divorcing Mitza. As a non-physics person I love the science in this book as well as the history and the human drama.

I’m also reading At Eighty-Two by May Sarton, a Belgian-born poet, fiction writer, and journal keeper; this was her last journal published before her death in 1995. Sarton writes about the tension between art and life. She writes of the creative gifts of solitude and the frustrations of growing old and infirm. She writes beautifully about what it’s like to be human, and a woman, and alive. I’ve been reading her work since I was 20, and have returned to it again and again throughout my own life and career.
Visit Harriet Brown's website.

--Marshal Zeringue