Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties

Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties

by Madeleine May Kunin Governor


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Many readers are already familiar with Madeleine Kunin, the former three-term governor of Vermont, who served as the deputy secretary of education and ambassador to Switzerland under President Bill Clinton. In her newest book, a memoir entitled Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties, the topic is aging, but she looks well beyond the physical tolls and explores the emotional ones as well. And she has had an extraordinary life: governor, ambassador, feminist, wife, mother, professor, poet, and much, much more. 

As recently reported in the New York Times, a girl born today can expect to live to the age of ninety, on average (boys, on the other hand, can expect to live until age eighty-five). Life expectancy, for many, is increasing, yet people rarely contemplate the emotional changes that come alongside the physical changes of aging. Madeleine wants to change that. Coming of Age: My Journey to the Eighties takes a close and incisive look at what it is like to grow old. The book is a memoir, yet most important of all, it is an honest and positive look at aging and how it has affected her life.
Cover photo © Todd Lockwood.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781732854086
Publisher: Green Writers Press
Publication date: 11/22/2019
Pages: 200
Sales rank: 791,476
Product dimensions: 4.90(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Governor Kunin has written three previous books: Living a Political Life (Knopf), and The New Feminist Agenda: Defining the Next Revolution for Women, Work, and Family (New York Times Editor's Choice) and Pearls Politics and Power. She has more energy than two 40-year-olds. She is currently James Marsh Scholar Professor-at-Large at the University of Vermont where she gives lectures on feminism and women and politics. She also serves on the board of the Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC), a nongovernmental organization that she founded in 1991, and she recently launched Emerge Vermont to encourage and support women in politics. She lives in Shelburne, Vermont.

Author photo by Paul Boisvert.

Table of Contents

Eighty-Four Years 2

Foreword 3

No Longer 10

1 The Year I Turned Eighty 13

The Bed 22

2 I Am Not Old 23

When I Was Sick 26

3 Attraction 27

Can There be More to Say 32

4 The Cane, the Walker, the Wheelchair 33

Chrysalis 48

5 Late in Life Love 49

I Loved You When You did the Dishes 54

6 Fat Backs 57

Hands 64

7 The Manicure, My Mother 65

December 21, 2016 74

8 Downsizing 77

Photo Section 87

I am Multiples 100

9 Finding a Seat 103

Teeth 108

10 Alone 111

Autumn 122

11 Independence 123

Ants 134

12 Searching for the Past 135

Christmas Cookies 144

13 My Brother's Death 147

Planets 154

14 My Fleeting Senses 155

New Year's Eve at Wake Robin 160

15 How Will I Die? 161

Last Spring 172

16 The Lake 173

A Love Poem 176

Afterword 179

About the Author 187

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