Great River Reading Series, Laura Jean Baker, author

Monday | October 21 | 7:00pm
Stark 103 | Winona State University.

Laura Jean Baker will read from her memoir, The Motherhood Affidavits, which won the 2018 Norbert Blei/August Derleth Nonfiction Book Award, from the Council for Wisconsin Writers.

After giving birth to her daughter, UW-Oshkosh professor Baker felt the effects of the natural “love hormone” oxytocin, and this natural remedy relieved the depression she had been dealing with much of her life. Over the next eight years, her “oxy” cravings, and her family, only grew- to the dismay of her husband, Ryan, a freelance public defender. In this braided memoir that explores her addiction to childbearing alongside her husband’s casework in criminal defense, Baker displays the stark realities of parenting and provides an unflinching examination of the intersections between motherhood, poverty, drugs, and mental illness.

About the Author: Laura Jean Baker teaches at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, specializing in memoir, women’s stories, crime narratives and literature for children. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan, where she was a Colby Fellow. Her poetry and essays have appeared in Alaska Quarterly Review, War, Literature and the Arts: An International Journal of the Humanities, and Calyx, among others, and she has been twice nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her essay “The Year of the Tiger” was named a Notable essay in Best American Essays 2013.

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