Far From the Tree. A dozen kinds of love. Parents, children and the search for identity
Titu Maiorescu University, Bucharest, Romania
The book "Far From the Tree" of the journalist and psychiatry lecturer at the Cornell University, Andrew Solomon, is a comprehensive study about the relationship between parents and their children with special needs. The volume is the result of interviewing more than 300 families over a period of ten years and of a rigorous documentation on wide-ranging topics. The author writes about children affected by deafness, dwarfism, Down syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, severe disabilities, but also about gifted children, about those conceived through rape, children with gender identity disorders or juvenile delinquents. Each of these categories is addressed in a separate chapter that includes recent studies on the subject, testimonials and histories of the families in question, and a placement in a social context of each issue, thus achieving an overall view on every issue. The book is built on a round frame, as it starts and ends with the accounts of the author’s personal experiences from the perspective of a son (who was perceived differently because of dyslexia and then homosexuality) and that of a parent.