We’ve known for many years that early humans arose in Africa, but not until recently has the decoding of DNA allowed us to trace the paths by which we became who we are today: to follow the footprints through time, via our genes, back from who we are in the present to our ancestors deep in the past.
My new work in progress, Footprints Through Time: A White Mother’s Search for Common Roots With Her Black Daughter, is an attempt to connect the dots through time between myself and my daughter, adopted in Mali, in hopes of converging on our most recent common mother, a woman who lived somewhere in Africa more than 100,000 years ago.
What excites me most about this search is its potential to demonstrate that, beyond differences of race and culture, we are all – literally – a family of humanity. I keep track of recent advances in human evolutionary genetics, anthropology and archeology that are relevant to our search via a blog on Facebook. Won’t you join us on our journey?
Previously by Meg Bortin …
Meet Mona Venture — my alter ego, who leaves America in the Vietnam era, moves to Paris, becomes a reporter, and goes on to Fleet Street and Gorbachev’s Russia. She’s the heroine of my independently published memoir, Desperate to Be a Housewife.
Mona’s misadventures with men unfold against a backdrop of historic events. She’s young, she’s modern and she’s desperate to solve a problem: how to reconcile her life as an independent woman with her dreams of happily-ever-after. You can read a short excerpt here, or purchase the book here.
Before writing Desperate, I was a journalist for many years with postings in Paris, London, Moscow and Manila. To check out some of the articles I’ve written, click here.
My first literary work was Dear Djeneba, an essay in an anthology on adoption published by Granta in 2005 and Random House in 2006. As a blogger, I write regularly on French cuisine as The Everyday French Chef and occasionally on writing for various literary sites.
Praise for Desperate to Be a Housewife
‘Meg Bortin’s eventful memoir will surprise and amuse.’
— Diane Johnson, author of Le Divorce
‘Tear gas and U.S. college riots in the ’60s, Paris and love in the ’70s, Gorbachev’s Moscow and Afghan missiles in the ’80s, Meg Bortin saw it all, did it all and wrote it all up, while enjoying serial love affairs and a lot of great meals along the way. More than a thrilling memoir, this is also an enthralling book about sex, love and the evolving challenges of being a woman in our time.’
— Martin Walker, author of The Cold War: A History and the international best-selling Bruno, Chief of Police mystery novels
‘A wonderful page-turner of a memoir. Beautifully written, very moving and proof that Meg Bortin must get cracking on the next one.’
— Tony Barber of the Financial Times
‘I read this book in one sitting! It’s a terrific read – an involving picture of a very interesting period with a very attractive heroine.’
— Julia Watson, author of Russian Salad and American Pie
‘Meg Bortin’s adventures are passionate, full of tenderness and fun. I enjoyed every twist and turn and read the entire saga in one sitting.’
— Jim Haynes, author of Everything Is and Thanks for Coming