Marianne Brooker


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What makes a good death? A good daughter?

In 2009, with her forties and a harsh wave of austerity on the horizon, Marianne Brooker’s mother was diagnosed with primary progressive multiple sclerosis. She made a workshop of herself and her surroundings, combining creativity and activism in inventive ways.

But over time, her ability to work, to move and to live without pain diminished drastically. Determined to die in her own home, on her own terms, she stopped eating and drinking in 2019.

In Intervals, Brooker reckons with heartbreak, weaving her first and final memories with a study of doulas, living wills and the precarious economics of social, hospice and funeral care.

Blending memoir, polemic and feminist philosophy, Brooker joins writers such as Anne Boyer, Maggie Nelson, Donald Winnicott and Lola Olufemi to raise essential questions about choice and interdependence and, ultimately, to imagine care otherwise.

‘Intervals is an extraordinary essay that is both unflinchingly intimate and radically political. It is the simple account of a daughter losing her mother too soon. It is also an examination of class, money and structural power. Brooker’s striking achievement is to never be prescriptive while, at the same time, never holding back from the force of her argument. It is, I suppose, an elegy. And like the best of elegies, and the bond it describes – it is charged with life.’ — Nathan Filer, author of The Shock of the Fall

‘Intervals is an endlessly moving and profoundly generous telling of what it means to give and receive care. Stunning in its intimacy and expansive in its political purpose, Brooker’s writing invites us to think deeply about the relationship between giving care and honouring life. Through visceral, tactile details of creating, working, making and tending, Brooker brings us into the spaces where caring happens, where life and its endings happen. A rare, revelatory, and truly radical book.’ — Elinor Cleghorn, author of Unwell Women

Format/pages: paperback / 112 pages

ISBN: 9781804270837

Publisher: Fitzcarraldo Editions

Year: 2024

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