Hadiyah Joan Carlyle’s memoir, Torch in the Dark tells the moving story of how she, as a single mother, pioneered as one of the first women since World War II to enter the trades as a union welder. Beginning in a Jewish immigrant neighborhood in New Jersey, the story moves through San Francisco’s colorful Haight-Ashbury in the sixties to arrive at last at Fairhaven Shipyard in Bellingham, Washington. For Hadiyah, welding became both a path to self-reliance and economic survival, and a metaphor for healing from early childhood trauma.
Hadiyah was passionate in her desire to learn to weld, to feel the power of the torch, to see the fire, to dispel the darkness. The story of Hadiyah’s journey to healing offers profound inspiration for anyone struggling with issues of abuse and oppression. In addition, the book provides an insightful perspective on the culture of the ’60s and ’70s.