Her Face in the Mirror

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A beautiful exploration of the difficult and affirming relationship between mothers and their daughters in the lives of Jewish women.

This resonant collection of stories, poems, and essays explores the difficult and affirming relationships between Jewish mothers and daughters. Contributors include Kim Chernin, Tillie Olsen, Grace Paley, Letty Cottin Pogrebin, Judith Viorst, and others.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
A rich collection —Publishers Weekly

"Amazing. . . Her Face in the Mirror talks to us with the combined voices of many wise daughters and mothers who are trying to make sense of the mystery of their exquisite bond." —Belles Lettres

"This collection was a gift to me, and will be for others, in understanding ourselves and those we love." —Dr. Elaine Reuben, president of the Jewish Study Center in Moment

"Fearlessly, Faye Moskowitz has drawn together fifty-six Jewish mothers and daughters in an eloquent mosaic of memoirs by eminent contemporary American authors. Just whom each contributor sees in the mirror is pictured with a painful honesty." —The Columbus Dispatch

'You don't have to be Jewish to appreciate Faye Moskowitz's work. All you need is a mind, a heart, a mother, and a need for warmth and tradition.' —Susan Stamberg, National Public Radio

Belle Lettres
Amazing...Her Face in the Mirror talks to us with the combined voices of many wise daughters and mothers who are trying to make sense of the mystery of their exquisite bond.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In this rich collection of short stories, poems, essays and novel excerpts, Moskowitz (A Leak in the Heart) presents varied voices of Jewish mothers and daughters. The 56 contributors-among them Grace Paley, Tillie Olsen, Judith Viorst and Letty Cottin Pogrebin-offer a canvas filled with strong emotions, which are often painful but generally affirming. We read of mothers and daughters dealing with Jewish identity, with generational strains, with a love-hate bond. Most poignant are the daughters, tributes to their dead mothers and their yearnings for a relationship lost, as expressed in Judith Steinbergh's poem ``No Answer'': ``I'm not into the afterlife/ and your burial pursues me/ without mercy,/ MA/ answer me.'' (Oct.)
Library Journal
Former National Public Radio commentator Moskowitz has gathered an astonishing collection of poems, stories, and essays that explore widely diverse issues like intergenerational conflict, religious orthodoxy, love, death, and the Holocaust. This is a penetrating look at the mother-daughter bond from the perspective of Jewish women. A persistent theme is the marginal status of the Jew in America as a metaphor for the status of women in Judaism. A wide range of writers from Grace Paley and Tillie Olsen to Sandra Bernhard and Irena Klepfisz raise their voices in these haunting and remarkable pages. Highly recommended.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807036150
  • Publisher: Beacon
  • Publication date: 9/28/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

Brit Kedusha 3
Borrowing the Knot 4
Poker 5
Lines of Work 7
Matrushka Dolls 12
Happy Birthday 14
Survivor 17
There Was My Very Scary Mad Period 19
Family Feelings 21
Old Pros 24
Our Wounded 31
Lovingkindness 33
Only a Phase 37
The Bad Mother 49
The Dress 52
Selfish 56
Plastic Flowers 57
On Rockawalkin Road 68
Listening to Myself on My Daughter's Message Machine 73
Plumbing 75
In My Mother's House: Epilogue 76
Surviving 89
Pocahontas in Camelot 91
Poland, 1944: My Mother Is Walking down a Road 105
Garden 108
Belonging 110
Fruit Cellar 112
No Returns 114
A Life 125
Burglars in the Flesh 126
The Daughter of Survivors 142
Pantoum for the Children, So They Will Know Yiddish 144
The Fish 149
Birthing 150
Gifts 158
The Thousand Islands 165
Talking Back 171
Fierce Attachments 172
What Good Is a Smart Girl? 178
Tropical Aunts 183
The Different Landscape 195
Looking for Tamerlane 203
To a Daughter Leaving Home 215
L'Dor v Dor: From Generation to Generation 216
Mother, I Hardly Knew You 221
Second Person 238
My Daughter the Cypress 248
Preserves 249
Home for Winter 251
The Chain 255
The Ribbon 257
Yahrzeit 258
Mother 259
A Leak in the Heart 261
My Mother's Obituary 265
Gifts 266
You Never Can Tell 273
Autumn 1980 277
Collecting Herself 280
There 286
Journey to the Mirror 288
Pebbles and Stones 289
Dream-Vision 297
In the Rearview Mirror 300
No Answer 302
Contributors 303
Credits 311
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