Andrew Solomon on Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity

Monday, December 10, 2012

National Book Award–winning author Andrew Solomon tells the stories of families coping with deafness, dwarfism, Down syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, multiple severe disabilities, with children who are prodigies, who are conceived in rape, who become criminals, who are transgender. In Far from the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity, he looks at how these parents not only learn to deal with their exceptional children but also find profound meaning in doing so.


Andrew Solomon
News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
Get the best of WNYC in your inbox, every morning.

Comments [7]

David from Fredericksburg, VA

@ Katherine B. from Brooklyn

That's right - the first step is to dehumanize the intended victims.

Dec. 10 2012 12:43 PM
carol weintein karlin

this is such an amazing and profound discussion. gracious, kind, compassionate, and beautiful.

Dec. 10 2012 12:41 PM

It's uplifting to hear someone discuss the complexities of having a child who is different. It's really time schools (AND TEACHERS) put more money to supporting those children, whatever their differences may be. My son has Tourettes. I can't tell how many teachers have looked me in the face and have told me he's faking it and we're too permissive (crack down on him). It's the tiny arrows through the heart a parent often has to deal with. Thank you for writing this and broadcasting this.

Dec. 10 2012 12:34 PM
moshe from uws

was wondering how the idea of parents asking 'where this kid came from' can help people to adopt children?

Dec. 10 2012 12:25 PM
foodaggro from Brooklyn

Fascinating topic - one I think about often. Looking forward to reading the book.

Dec. 10 2012 12:21 PM
Katherine B. from Brooklyn

Brian: mentioning aborting "children" with these conditions (Down syndrome, etc.) in comparison with killing a 10-year-old with autism comes across as inflammatory and anti-choice to me...For many women who face a bad prenatal diagnosis, this is a complex and soul-rending careful how you paint it!

Dec. 10 2012 12:19 PM
Steve Giovinco from New York, NY

Great to hear Andrew Solomon on WNYC (it was an honor to hear parts of the book read while attending Yaddo together as it was being written).

Dec. 10 2012 12:09 PM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.