Sunday Reading: Celebrating Mother’s Day

Photograph by H. Armstrong Roberts / Getty

Mother’s Day arrives this yr with a bit extra resonance than ordinary. Many of us have been separated from our family members in the course of the pandemic, and a few have misplaced dad and mom. Today, in honor of the vacation, we’re bringing you a number of tales about moms, motherhood, and the wealthy relationships between moms and kids.

In “Coming Home Again,” the novelist Chang-rae Lee recollects the Korean meals that his mom made for him and the interval that he spent caring for her after she was identified with most cancers. (“My mother never left me any recipes, but this is how I learned to make her food, each dish coming not from a list or a card but from the aromatic spread of a board.”)

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In “The Prodigal Daughter,” Jill Lepore recounts how her spirited mom influenced her personal writing on the lifetime of Jane Franklin, Benjamin Franklin’s sister. In “Confessions of a Juggler,” Tina Fey chronicles her wrestle to stability work and parenting. (When folks ask how she handles all of it, Fey writes, “sometimes I just hand them a juicy red apple I’ve poisoned in my working-mother witch cauldron and fly away.”) In “How My Mother and I Became Chinese Propaganda,” Jiayang Fan displays on a daunting time when she was separated from her mom, who suffers from A.L.S., in the course of the pandemic, and on the following social-media marketing campaign initiated towards her by Chinese nationalists. Finally, in “My Mother’s Dreams for Her Son, and All Black Children,” Hilton Als considers the influence of final yr’s racial-justice protests and contemplates the teachings that he realized from his mom whereas rising up. (“If Ma failed, then we failed, and she never wanted us to feel that. Something else Ma wanted: for black people in Brooklyn, in America, not to forever be effectively refugees.”)

Wherever chances are you’ll be on this vacation, we hope that these items give you some a lot wanted consolation.

—David Remnick

Courtesy the writer

She longed for black folks in America to not be perpetually refugees—confined by borders that they didn’t create and by a penal system that killed them earlier than they died.

What a son remembers finest, when all that’s left are reminiscences.

Illustration by Tyler Comrie; images courtesy the writer

A daughter caught between China and America, a mum or dad suspended between life and loss of life.

Photograph courtesy Tina Fey

What’s the rudest query you may ask a mom?

Writing, historical past, mourning.

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