Waiting in the wings: portrait of a queer motherhood

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Firebrand Books, 1997 - Social Science - 128 pages
5 Reviews
Cherrie Moraga, the celebrated Chicana lesbian writer, has crafted a jewel of a book in Waiting In The Wings: Portrait of a Queer Motherhood. This is the story of "one small human being's struggle for survival", the author's two-and-one-half pound premature baby boy.

While the specifics belong to Moraga and her loved ones -- her large close-knit biological clan; her long-term partner; the child's father -- the tale is told in common with every woman who has experienced the wonder and terror of pregnancy, the trauma of a child's near-death. What is uncommon is that the mother is a lesbian, a writer, a Chicana -- all in the same breath of her storytelling.

"Lesbians don't make babies with our lovers", she writes. "Our blood doesn't mix". What does mix in Waiting In The Wings are blood and queer relations, Mexican Catholicism and Indian ceremony, butch and femme, life and death -- creating the carne y huesos not only of a baby, but of a family. Familia the author holds to in the grip of labor, sister in one hand, lover in the other. Family whose history she sees written in the dried parchment that is a dying uncle's skin.

"I am trying to write about the impossible. The ordinary beginning and ending of a life", Cherrie Moraga tells us. So ordinary, in fact, that perhaps Waiting In The Wings is not that "queer" after all.

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Review: Waiting in the Wings: Portrait of a Queer Motherhood

User Review  - Cindy - Goodreads

I enjoyed the first half a lot more because I guess that I don't care about motherhood that much. So I ended up enjoying this a 3, and gave it 5 stars for quality because I do think it's a perfectly ... Read full review

Review: Waiting in the Wings: Portrait of a Queer Motherhood

User Review  - Julie - Goodreads

I wanted to love this book. I really did, but it just felt flat to me. Moraga also seems to take the tack of Rebecca Walker with the conviction that there is something special about "blood relations ... Read full review


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About the author (1997)

Moraga is Artist-in-Residence at Stanford University.

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