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Red Diaper Daughter

By Laura Bock

“I grew up in the late 1940s and 50s in San Francisco, the daughter of socialists active in the labor movement, the granddaughter of Russian Jewish social revolutionaries. They were called “reds,” “commies” and “subversives.” I am a Red Diaper Baby, proud that my heritage is one of resistance and defiance. It has been my job to follow in their footsteps…and for me the burning question is, did I do them proud by representing yet another radical activist generation, putting body and principles on the line.”

Now in her early 70’s, the author looks back on her life: Her family, the choices she made and the paths she took–with the last 60 years as a backdrop. She tells her very personal stories of the legacy she received, the impact of McCarthyism on her childhood, coming of age in the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960’s, and how she found her voice in the second wave of the women’s liberation movement of the mid-1970s.

She describes her transformation from a self-hating and hiding fat child into a proud fat woman who joined the fat liberation and size acceptance movements and performed for 18 years with a feminist theater collective she helped to found. She writes of losing her eyesight and later her hearing and of the challenges and joys of becoming old, while remaining an activist.

This is a vividly written, revealing and at times funny memoir.

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