Cover: Memory Speaks: On Losing and Reclaiming Language and Self, from Harvard University PressCover: Memory Speaks in HARDCOVER

Memory Speaks

On Losing and Reclaiming Language and Self

With implications for communities and identities, Memory Speaks is an astute linguistic investigation, showing that language is something both in people and of them.Foreword Reviews (starred review)

[A] moving and deeply personal account… Sedivy also makes a case for saving endangered languages… The connection between language and memory is…beautifully rendered… An astute, thoughtful volume.Publishers Weekly

In this insightful and informative analysis, Julie Sedivy examines what happens to memory, dreams, and even the sense of self when you enter another language. It is a book which speaks to the condition of countless people who have changed language and culture in our globalized world.—Eva Hoffman, author of Lost in Translation: A Life in a New Language

Julie Sedivy’s book is not just a study of what it means to cradle more than one language or more than one culture, perhaps even more than one identity—it is a profound elegy to memories that endure despite displacement and the many time zones that define our lives.—André Aciman, author of Homo Irrealis: Essays

One of the finest books I have ever read about language: a wise and humane amalgam of poetry and scientific rigor, rooted in Julie Sedivy’s deeply-felt personal experience. Full of compassion and sharp-edged insights, Memory Speaks will touch all of us who care about the tongues we speak and about the countless tongues now falling into oblivion.—Mark Abley, author of Spoken Here: Travels among Threatened Languages

At last, a go-to book on bilingualism and why it matters. One part science and one part personal history, Sedivy’s book guides us through the eternal question of how we handle two or more languages. It leaves us monolinguals looking deprived rather than as the default.—John H. McWhorter, author of Nine Nasty Words: English in the Gutter—Then, Now, and Forever

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Nicole Fleetwood and Monica Muñoz Martinez Awarded MacArthur Fellowships

Harvard University Press congratulates its authors Nicole Fleetwood and Monica Muñoz Martinez for being named to the 2021 class of 25 MacArthur Fellows. The prestigious no-strings-attached $625,000 awards are given to individuals “who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction.”