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How to Make Your Mother Cry: Fictions

How to Make Your Mother Cry: Fictions

From the author of This Is One Way to Dance, linked genre-queer short stories braided with images and ephemera explore the experiences of growing up and living as a diasporic Gujarati woman searching for home. 

In the eleven linked short stories of How to Make Your Mother Cry, Sejal Shah builds a shrine gleaming with memory and myth. Keys, rocks, photographs, fairy tales, fables, and relics all add texture and meaning to an exploration of growing up and living as a diasporic Gujarati woman in a culture that excuses the behavior of men. Throughout, girls and women contend with the expectations, limitations, and challenges of becoming the heroine of one’s own life. 

How to Make Your Mother Cry—Shah’s follow-up to her award-winning essay collection This Is One Way to Dance—continues the rich tradition of innovative feminist work by Claudia Rankine, Leslie Marmon Silko, and Maxine Hong Kingston.

By braiding stories and images with fictional letters to a beloved English teacher, the collection defies traditional autofiction, epistolary, and short story conventions. These astonishing stories about friendship and love, resilience and survival establish Shah as an exciting new voice in contemporary fiction.

Book Details

Publisher: West Virginia University Press
Publish Date: May 1, 2024
ISBN: 9781959000136
Language: English

About the Author

Sejal Shah is an artist, dancer, poet, writer, and teacher whose work crosses genres and disciplines. The daughter of immigrants from Kenya and India, she is the author of the award-winning essay collection This Is One Way to Dance and the groundbreaking essay on invisible disability and neurodiversity “Even If You Can’t See It.” She lives in Rochester, New York.

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