Going Where I'm Coming From: Memoirs of American Youth


14 short memoirs about growing up in America's diverse society by Susan Power, Luis Rodriguez, Willie Ruff, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Ved Mehta, Gary Soto, Naomi Shabib Nye, Lee Daniels, Graham Salisbury, Lensey Namioka, Helen Epstein, and more.
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14 short memoirs about growing up in America's diverse society by Susan Power, Luis Rodriguez, Willie Ruff, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Ved Mehta, Gary Soto, Naomi Shabib Nye, Lee Daniels, Graham Salisbury, Lensey Namioka, Helen Epstein, and more.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``To find out who they are and where they're going, the writers of this collection have looked back to where they've come from,'' Mazer (editor of the fiction collection America Street) states in her introduction. Her solid anthology uses 14 entries to explore a commendable range of cultures, including Sioux, Polish, Japanese, Hispanic, African American, Jewish, Indian and Chinese. Lensey Namioka's ``Math and After Math'' wryly contrasts the attitudes of her Chinese parents and those of her American classmates toward math-proficient females. In the wrenching ``Dinnertime,'' Helen Epstein hints at the immense sorrow and strength of her parents, survivors of the Holocaust trying to earn a living and keep their pride in a New York City that cares little about her father's Olympic athlete past or her mother's standing in prewar Prague. Particularly moving is African American jazz musician Willie Ruff's ``A Call to Assembly,'' in which he describes both his joy when a boyhood employer taught him sign language so he could communicate with a deaf co-worker, and his rage and loss of respect when the same boss makes a horrible remark about ``niggers.'' A sturdy, stimulating collection. Ages 12-up. (Jan.)
The ALAN Review - Sati Maharaj-Boggs
This is an outstanding collection of fourteen personal narratives by fourteen different writers who were either born and grew up in the United States, or who migrated to the United States while they were young. From their unique perspectives, these writers recount inspiring and true stories of growing up and adapting to life in the cultural milieu of the United States. What is most fascinating about this collection is that each writer takes a journey into her/his past in search of identity, and this search facilitates self-discovery. This discovery, as the reader comes to learn through each story, is that who we are is vastly dependent upon where we've been. These narratives hold a definite appeal for those students who have grown up in the United States as well as for those who have been exposed to life in two cultures.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892552061
  • Publisher: Persea Books
  • Publication date: 9/28/1994
  • Pages: 166
  • Sales rank: 224,687
  • Lexile: 1080L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Anne Mazer is the author of several widely acclaimed books, including the novels Moose Street and The Oxboy, and a picture book, The Salamander Room, winner of the Keystone to Reading Book Award and a Reading Rainbow Feature Selection.
Anthologies from edited by Mazer include: America Street, Going Where I'm Coming From, A Walk in My World, and Working Days. Mazur lives in Ithaca, New York.
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Table of Contents

Wings 1
One More Lesson 12
Ice 18
Math and After Math 27
Stone Women 35
Always Running 44
A Call to Assembly 62
Sound-Shadows of the New World 71
A Boston Latin School Boy 82
Dinnertime 101
Absolutely Someday 119
One Last Time 129
The Enormous Piano 139
Thank You in Arabic 149
Acknowledgments 165
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2008

    Collected Stories of the AMERICAN Youth

    This collection of short excerpts from memoirs tells a tale of not just one culture, but many, and how each faced a different kind of prejudice or barrier. From being a minority at the prestige Boston Latin School for Boys, to being the daughter of a holocaust survivor in America. Each story, each author, has his own view of the culture in this country they face, it truly shows the diversity and prejudice that happens here everyday. The reason I chose to read this book is because it was stories from American youth, which is something many others and I can relate to. I think American culture is interesting because it is the children of all the older countries coming together and forming a whole new culture. This book did a great job at giving a glimpse to the reader of many different views and perspectives of an American.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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