"I'm not Nebuchadnezzar, and I'm not MacBeth." So who am I? Chicago, Nairobi, Jerusalem, Cambridge, Edinburgh: the geography of Jenni Calder's life is as diverse as the ethnic, intellectual and emotional components. Jenni Calder has spent a lifetime in search of her identity, first as a daughter and sister, then as a writer, wife and mother. Not Nebuchadnezzar is a biography of sorts, a chronicle of the consuming search for that elusive concept known as 'identity'. Highly respected biographer of Robert Louis Stevenson, poet and historian, Calder has chosen an intriguingly elliptical, thematic approach to writing her own vividly presented life story. Keenly observed cameos of people and places abound but although this moving book is infused with a sense of mischief and fun, at heart it is a wise contemplation of life. Jenni Calder's retrospect describes a life well-lived, full of event and achievement, love and loss, aspiration and frustration. If you know who you are not, do you then know who you are? Jenni Calder was born Jennifer Rachel Daiches to a Scottish-born mother and English-born Jewish father in Chicago, one of America's great melting-pot cities. Not Nebuchadnezzar traces her journey from then to now. Through this book, Calder discovers that her true sense of identity can only develop from finding out who she is not. Here she balances her multiple identities to throw kaleidoscopic prisms from a single source - herself.
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CHAPTER ONE American Child
CHAPTER TWO Dead or Alive
8 other sections not shown
African Alan American Angus Angus's aware became biography born Botswana Calder Cambridge child childhood Christmas course Cullen cultural Daiches daughter Edinburgh England English experience fact father feel felt flat friends George Orwell girls Glasgow Gowan Highland huge identity Israel Israeli Jenni Calder Jewish Jews Kenya knew later learnt Lin Anderson lives Loch Fyne London look Luath male marriage married memory months morning mother Museum of Scotland Nairobi Naomi Mitchison narrative Nethermills never night Nineteen Eighty-Four Orwell parents past perhaps Peter Ritchie Calder Philpstoun play published Rachel recognised relationship remember road Robert Louis Stevenson role Scots Scottish seemed sense shared sometimes South Queensferry spent stayed Stevenson story Street student summer talk tartan teaching things thought told took tradition ulpan walk wanted woman women writing