Nicole Chung: A Living Remedy (ONLINE)
Nicole Chung, bestselling author of All You Can Ever Know, reads from and discusses her new book, A Living Remedy, a searing memoir of family, class and grief—a daughter’s search to understand the lives her adoptive parents led, the life she forged as an adult, and the lives she’s lost. Chung is joined in conversation by Eve L. Ewing.
This event is the live online broadcast of an in-person event. When you register for this event you will get a link to view the broadcast via Zoom. If you would like to attend the event in-person at the American Writers Museum, register here.
More about A Living Remedy:
“In this country, unless you attain extraordinary wealth, you will likely be unable to help your loved ones in all the ways you’d hoped. You will learn to live with the specific, hollow guilt of those who leave hardship behind, yet are unable to bring anyone else with them.”
Nicole Chung couldn’t hightail it out of her overwhelmingly white Oregon hometown fast enough. As a scholarship student at a private university on the East Coast, no longer the only Korean she knew, she found community and a path to the life she’d long wanted. But the middle class world she begins to raise a family in – where there are big homes, college funds, nice vacations – looks very different from the middle class world she thought she grew up in, where paychecks have to stretch to the end of the week, health insurance is often lacking, and there are no safety nets.
When her father dies at only sixty-seven, killed by diabetes and kidney disease, Nicole feels deep grief as well as rage, knowing that years of precarity and lack of access to healthcare contributed to his early death. And then the unthinkable happens – less than a year later, her beloved mother is diagnosed with cancer, and the physical distance between them becomes insurmountable as COVID-19 descends upon the world.
Exploring the enduring strength of family bonds in the face of hardship and tragedy, A Living Remedy examines what it takes to reconcile the distance between one life, one home, and another – and sheds needed light on some of the most persistent and grievous inequalities in American society.
Praise for A Living Remedy:
“Like the best memoirs, Nicole Chung’s A Living Remedy is both an excavation of the self and the people who sustain it—but also, at its core, a work of art undergirded by a tender, forgiving, and awe-filled gaze at what it means to live and hurt in the human world. The result is a bone-deep enactment of love in all its valences.”
—Ocean Vuong, author of On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous
“A Living Remedy is a bouquet of feeling—Nicole Chung weaves a groundbreaking narrative steeped in love, humor, the infinitude of memory, and the essentiality of community. Chung approaches the kaleidoscope of grief from its many angles, excavating its complexity with heart and candor; but Chung’s prose also soothes, uncovering hidden corners of the heart and its many permutations. A Living Remedy is elegiac and heart-expanding, a memoir that’s both an exploration of loss and a beacon for moving forward. We couldn’t be luckier to have this gift of a book.”
—Bryan Washington, author of Memorial
“A Living Remedy is a book about love, loss, leaving home, and finding home. Nicole Chung has a rare precious gift: the ability to tell an intimate story with vast social implications. A Living Remedy is a book that honors the way families are made through a collage of close encounters and shared struggles. Brimming with insight about class, race, identity, and politics, it will move and transform readers with its beauty, spirituality, and wisdom.”
—Imani Perry, author of South to America
NICOLE CHUNG is the author of the new memoir A Living Remedy and the national bestseller All You Can Ever Know. Named a Best Book of the Year by NPR, the Washington Post, Time, and many other outlets, All You Can Ever Know was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, a semifinalist for the PEN Open Book Award, and an Indies Choice Honor Book. Chung’s writing has appeared in numerous publications, including The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, Time, GQ, Slate, and The Guardian.
DR. EVE L. EWING is a writer, scholar, and cultural organizer from Chicago. She is the award-winning author of four books: the poetry collections Electric Arches and 1919, the nonfiction work Ghosts in the Schoolyard: Racism and School Closings on Chicago’s South Side, and a novel for young readers, Maya and the Robot. She is the co-author (with Nate Marshall) of the play No Blue Memories: The Life of Gwendolyn Brooks. She has written several projects for Marvel Comics, most notably the Ironheart series, and is currently writing Black Panther. Ewing is an associate professor in the Department of Race, Diaspora, and Indigeneity at the University of Chicago. Her work has been published in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, and many other venues. Currently she is working on her next book, Original Sins: The (Mis)education of Black and Native Children and the Construction of American Racism, which will be published by One World.