Book Talk: Why Didn't You Tell Me? A Memoir, with Carmen Rita Wong

Lectures & Talks

Book Talk: Why Didn't You Tell Me? A Memoir, with Carmen Rita Wong

Wednesday, September 21, 2022
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
306 Russell
Open to:
Alumni, Current Students, Faculty & Staff, TC Community

Please join Carmen Rita Wong in a discussion of her new book, Why Didn't You Tell Me? A Memoir (New York: Crown, 2022).

 "Carmen Rita Wong has always craved a sense of belonging: First as a toddler in a warm room full of Black and brown Latina women, like her mother, Lupe, cheering her dancing during her childhood in Harlem. And in Chinatown, where her immigrant father, “Papi” Wong, a hustler, would show her and her older brother off in opulent restaurants decorated in red and gold. Then came the almost exclusively white playgrounds of New Hampshire after her mother married her stepfather, Marty, who seemed to be the ideal of the white American dad.

As Carmen entered this new world with her new family—Lupe and Marty quickly had four more children—her relationship with her mother became fraught with tension, suspicion, and conflict, explained only years later by the secrets her mother had kept for so long.

And when those secrets were revealed, bringing clarity to so much of Carmen’s life, it was too late for answers. When her mother passed away, Carmen wanted to shake her soul by its shoulders and demand: Why didn’t you tell me?

A former national television host, advice columnist, and professor, Carmen searches to understand who she really is as she discovers her mother’s hidden history, facing the revelations that seep out. Why Didn’t You Tell Me? is a riveting and poignant story of Carmen’s experience of race and culture in America and how they shape who we think we are."

-- publisher's description


Carmen Rita Wong  received a Bachelor's degree in psychology and art history from Fairfield University and a Master's degree in psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is a writer and nonprofit board leader whose board positions include The Moth and the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. She was the co-creator and television host of On the Money on CNBC and was a national advice columnist for Glamour, Latina, Men’s Health, and Good Housekeeping. Wong is the author of a series of novels and two bestselling advice books. She is the founder and CEO of Malecon Productions, LLC, where she develops female-focused media and entertainment. She lives in Manhattan with her daughter.

 Moderating the book talk is fellow Teachers College alumna Dr. Dale Atkins, a licensed psychologist with more than forty years of experience as a relationship expert focusing on families, wellness, managing stress, and living a balanced, meaningful life.  Author of seven books and many chapters, articles, and journals for popular and professional audiences, Dale is a featured speaker who lectures and leads seminars worldwide. 

This event is co-sponsored by the Gottesman Libraries and Office of Alumni Relations.

Please rsvp with your interest and details no later than Monday, September 20th.

Where: 306 Russell




To request disability-related accommodations, contact OASID at, (212) 678-3689, as early as possible.

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