Imprint: A Memoir of Trauma in the Third Generation
Updated October 23, 2018
Join us for this book reading and talk with author Claire Sicherman.
“Hope of healing and surviving trauma permeate the pages of this creative book, offering acceptance and guidance to others of her — and the next — generation.”
—The Jewish Independent
Imprint is a profound and courageous exploration of trauma, family, and the importance of breaking silence and telling stories. This book is a fresh and startling combination of history and personal revelation.
When her son almost died at birth and her grandmother passed away, something inside of Claire Sicherman snapped. Her body, which had always felt weighed down by unknown hurt, suddenly suffered from chronic health conditions, and her heart felt cleaved in two. Her grief was so large it seemed to encompass more than her own lifetime, and she became determined to find out why.
Sicherman grew up reading Anne Frank and watching Schindler’s List with almost no knowledge of the Holocaust’s impact on her specific family. Though most of her ancestors were murdered in the Holocaust, Sicherman’s grandparents didn’t talk about their trauma and her mother grew up in Communist Czechoslovakia completely unaware she was even Jewish. Now a mother herself, Sicherman uses vignettes, epistolary style, and other unconventional forms to explore the intergenerational transmission of trauma, about the fact that genes can be altered and carry memories, which are then passed down-a genetic imprinting.
With astounding grace and strength, Sicherman weaves together a story that not only honours her ancestors but offers the truth to the next generation and her now nine-year-old son. A testimony of the connections between mind and body, the past and the present, Imprint is devastatingly beautiful-ultimately a story of love and survival.
Claire Sicherman is a graduate of the creative non-fiction program at The Humber School for Writers. Her work has appeared in the anthology Sustenance: Writers from B.C. and Beyond on the Subject of Food, and on Zathom.com. She lives with her husband and son on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia.