Award-winning poet and essayist Anne Boyer delivers a one-of-a-kind meditation on illness in the age of data?sharing her true story of coping with cancer, both the illness and the industry, in The Undying. A week after her forty-first birthday, the acclaimed poet Anne Boyer was diagnosed with highly aggressive triple-negative breast cancer. For a single mother living paycheck to paycheck who had always been the caregiver rather than the one needing care, the catastrophic illness was both a crisis and an initiation into new ideas about mortality and the gendered politics of illness. A twenty-first-century Illness as Metaphor, as well as a harrowing memoir of survival, The Undying explores the experience of illness as mediated by digital screens, weaving in ancient Roman dream diarists, cancer hoaxers and fetishists, cancer vloggers, corporate lies, John Donne, pro-pain "dolorists," the ecological costs of chemotherapy, and the many little murders of capitalism. It excoriates the pharmaceutical industry and the bland hypocrisies of "pink ribbon culture" while also diving into the long literary line of women writing about their own illnesses and ongoing deaths: Audre Lorde, Kathy Acker, Susan Sontag, and others. A genre-bending memoir in the tradition of The Argonauts, The Undying will break your heart, make you angry enough to spit, and show you contemporary America as a thing both desperately ill and occasionally, perversely glorious.
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"Acclaimed writer Anne Boyer offers a genre-bending audiobook about cancer--its multiple contexts and the ways she herself was impacted by her treatment for breast cancer. Her performance showcases a wide palette of dramatic tools, all perfectly matched to every thought-provoking idea in this meditative work. Whether narrating her personal experiences or from a more universal perspective, her interpretations and overall performance are outstanding. Also extraordinary is the range of issues she writes about, such as medical economics, technology, and the political and cultural biases of medical care, to name a few. This is philosophy brought down to earth, illustrated vividly by Boyer's own experiences as a patient, stories about other cancer victims, and the writings of other thoughtful authors. T.W. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2019, Portland, Maine"
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