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Reading with My Mother: Books as Objects

Reading with My Mother: Books as Objects I gingerly fold open the browned and stained cover of my mother's 1962 edition of The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. The title page rests despondently unattached. Dementia first stole my mother's ability to read and then slowly took her life. I cannot ask her about the annotations she made throughout this text. Still, I can read with my mother through its inscribed pencil-written notes. An object blurring the borders between happiness and suffering, presence and absence. In this essay, I contemplate how the physical object of a book and embedded traces of another's reading evoke emotions, memories, and selves. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Departures in Critical Qualitative Research University of California Press

Reading with My Mother: Books as Objects

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Publisher
University of California Press
Copyright
© 2019 by the Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved. Request permission to photocopy or reproduce article content at the University of California Press's Reprints and Permissions web page, http://www.ucpress.edu/journals.php?p=reprints.
eISSN
2333-9497
DOI
10.1525/dcqr.2019.8.2.44
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

I gingerly fold open the browned and stained cover of my mother's 1962 edition of The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. The title page rests despondently unattached. Dementia first stole my mother's ability to read and then slowly took her life. I cannot ask her about the annotations she made throughout this text. Still, I can read with my mother through its inscribed pencil-written notes. An object blurring the borders between happiness and suffering, presence and absence. In this essay, I contemplate how the physical object of a book and embedded traces of another's reading evoke emotions, memories, and selves.

Journal

Departures in Critical Qualitative ResearchUniversity of California Press

Published: Jun 1, 2019

References