Patricia A. Nugent will lead a discussion about the first "First Lady," expanding on her online-published article in Ms. Magazine about Mary Todd Lincoln. The program will explore whether Mary Todd Lincoln was a lunatic, as her only surviving son testified, or was she a woman who had suffered immeasurable loss with too little support? The possibility of extreme grief masquerading as insanity will be presented. Books written about Mrs. Lincoln will also be reviewed.
. According to Nugent, "Since Mrs. Lincoln was brought to life on the big screen by Sally Field in the movie "Lincoln," there's heightened compassion for, and interest in, this woman so loved by our beloved 16th president yet called 'one of the most detested public women in American history' by historians. She deserves a second look."
Patricia A. Nugent is the author of They Live On: Saying Goodbye to Mom and Dad, a compilation of vignettes portraying the stages of caring for and saying goodbye to a loved one. She served as a school administrator and adjunct professor, and has been published numerous times in national professional journals. She has a graduate degree in Communication from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where she received literary awards (including one bestowed by Susan Sontag) for her creative nonfiction essays.
The free program is sponsored by the Curiosity Forum, a partnership of Battenkill Books, Hubbard Hall, and Leslie Parke Studio. For more information, call (518) 677-2515.