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Easy Beauty: A Memoir

Chloé Cooper Jones

From Pulitzer Prize-nominated, Whiting Award--winning writer and philosophy professor Chlo. Cooper Jones, a groundbreaking memoir about disability, motherhood, and a journey to far-flung places in search of a new way of seeing and being seen.


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Book Information

Publisher: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster.
Publish Date: 04/05/2022
Pages: 288
ISBN-13: 9781982151997
ISBN-10: 1982151994
Language: English

What We're Saying

April 20, 2022

Upcoming Interview: Chloé Cooper Jones

By Chloé Cooper Jones, Sally Haldorson

Our next live-streamed author interview is with Chloé Cooper Jones on May 16, 2022 at 6:30pm CST. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

April 25, 2022

We see you, and we read you. Here are five reading recommendations focused on the disabled community of authors and books. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

June 01, 2022

Chloé Cooper Jones in Conversation with Sally Haldorson

By Emily Porter, Chloé Cooper Jones

We invite our reading community to come along as we take a deeper look at Easy Beauty: A Memoir and learn more about author Chloé Cooper Jones through this live-streamed interview. READ FULL DESCRIPTION

Full Description

"Soul-stretching, breathtaking...A game-changing gift to readers." --Booklist (starred review)

From Chloé Cooper Jones--Pulitzer Prize finalist, philosophy professor, Whiting Creative Nonfiction Grant recipient--a groundbreaking memoir about disability, motherhood, and a journey to far-flung places in search of a new way of seeing and being seen.

"I am in a bar in Brooklyn, listening to two men, my friends, discuss whether my life is worth living."

So begins Chloé Cooper Jones's bold, revealing account of moving through the world in a body that looks different than most. Jones learned early on to factor "pain calculations" into every plan, every situation. Born with a rare congenital condition called sacral agenesis which affects both her stature and gait, her pain is physical. But there is also the pain of being judged and pitied for her appearance, of being dismissed as "less than." The way she has been seen--or not seen--has informed her lens on the world her entire life. She resisted this reality by excelling academically and retreating to "the neutral room in her mind" until it passed. But after unexpectedly becoming a mother (in violation of unspoken social taboos about the disabled body), something in her shifts, and Jones sets off on a journey across the globe, reclaiming the spaces she'd been denied, and denied herself.

From the bars and domestic spaces of her life in Brooklyn to sculpture gardens in Rome; from film festivals in Utah to a Beyoncé concert in Milan; from a tennis tournament in California to the Killing Fields of Phnom Penh, Jones weaves memory, observation, experience, and aesthetic philosophy to probe the myths underlying our standards of beauty and desirability, and interrogates her own complicity in upholding those myths.

With its emotional depth, its prodigious, spiky intelligence, its passion and humor, Easy Beauty is the rare memoir that has the power to make you see the world, and your place in it, with new eyes.

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