Danzy Senna

Ladies We Love: Danzy Senna

May 3, 2011 at 10:51 am , by

There’s not much I can think of that would make me want to extend my hour-long commute to work in the mornings, but that’s what Danzy Senna’s new book You are Free did. I didn’t want to put the eight-story collection down! I am not a harried new mom like Livy, a young woman dealing with her mother’s death like Andrea, or a troubled lonely singleton like Jackie, but there was something that linked me to those women and all of the other female protagonists in the book. Maybe it’s the humanity that Senna infuses into each of her characters.  Whatever “it” is would be a great topic for any book club discussion. Senna, who is the author of three other books — Caucasia (another one of my favorites), Symptomatic, and Where Did you Sleep Last Night? — answered our “Ladies We Love” questions.

What makes me a lady: That I insist on making my bed every morning; that I make my sons eat lots of vegetables.

Favorite guilty pleasures: Us Weekly, dark chocolate and my nightly two glasses of Chardonnay.

Three things on your life list: 1.To be able to raise my sons into confident, healthy, aware men. 2. To translate some of the ideas and themes of my written works into film or television. 3. To take care of a child who is not my own.

If I could have a superpower, it would be: The power to heal through touch.

Ladies I admire: All the anonymous women who raise their children alone, who flee abusive husbands, who take in and nurture other women’s children, who flee oppressive regimes, who speak truth to power, who find the courage to tell what really happened.