Dealing with grief? Check out this Jewish author coming to Left Bank Books


Merissa Nathan Gerson is the author of “Forget Prayers, Bring Cake: A Single Woman’s Guide to Grieving.”

Eric Berger, Associate Editor

Left Bank Books is hosting a virtual event Thursday, Aug. 19 with the Jewish author of an upcoming book on grief.

Merissa Nathan Gerson, a Washington University graduate, writer and sex educator, wrote “Forget Prayers, Bring Cake: A Single Woman’s Guide to Grieving” for “people of all ages and orientations dealing with grief of any sort—professional, personal, romantic, familial, or even the sadness of the modern day,” according to a description of the book, which will be released Aug. 17.

Gerson, who now lives in New Orleans and teaches journalism at Tulane University, studied American Culture Studies and Women and Gender Studies at Wash U and for three years ran the school’s Committee Organized for Rape Education and the Committee on Sexual Assault, according to her website.

She later earned a master’s degree in Jewish studies from Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, Calif., and spent a year studying Torah at the PARDES institute for Jewish Studies.

She also delivered a talk in 2018 with more than 20,000 views on Facebook on “what it means for all Jewish bodies — cisgender and otherwise — to respect, to honor, and to teach one another about consent and to communally atone for our sins.”

Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Playboy, The Atlantic, and Tablet.

She recently wrote an essay for the Jewish Book Council titled “Sex and Death: A Jewish Woman’s Guide to Grieving.”

The talk, which will also include St. Louis author Rebecca Lester, is scheduled for 7 p.m., Aug. 19 on Left Bank Books’ Facebook and YouTube pages.

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