The first episode of the Shalom in the City’s books club episode. In the book club episode, Cara and I discuss, “The Light of the World”, by Elizabeth Alexander.
In THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD, Elizabeth Alexander finds herself at an existential crossroads after the sudden death of her husband. Channeling her poetic sensibilities into a rich, lucid price, Alexander tells a love story that is, itself, a story of loss. As she reflects on the beauty of her married life, the trauma resulting from her husband’s death, and the solace found in caring for her two teenage sons, Alexander universalizes a very personal quest for meaning and acceptance in the wake of loss.
In this episode, we deep dive into the two major themes of the book: death (obvs) and identity. We also laugh, share deep, dark confessions, and Cara breaks out into song.
We also answer a question from a listener posted to the Shalom Sistas’ Hangout
The passage that stands out most to me is on p.93 about Alexander’s parents’ response to her husband’s death and the quote, “To be a parent is to be terra firma, to stand, is to be planted in the earth.” Having dealt with grief myself as a parent, I’ve wondered how much I should shelter my kids and how much to share. How do we help them with their own grief without traumatizing them with ours?
Over all we have a great time and can’t wait to jump into our next book selection, “Bad Feminist”
A collection of essays spanning politics, criticism, and feminism from one of the most-watched young cultural observers of her generation, Roxane Gay.
“Pink is my favorite color. I used to say my favorite color was black to be cool, but it is pink—all shades of pink. If I have an accessory, it is probably pink. I read Vogue, and I’m not doing it ironically, though it might seem that way. I once live-tweeted the September issue.”
We hope you pop over to the hangout and share your thoughts on, “The Light of the World” and if you’re reading, “Bad Feminist” with Cara and me let us know. Your thoughts and questions are super important to our conversations.
A Bookish Kind of Shalom to you my Sistas,