I love literature. It’s my Dhruva Tara, my north star.
When I am not teaching, I am reading and writing. I also love to travel and do so as and when possible.
While growing up, my family moved around extensively and therefore I picked up different values, socially, situationally, and symbolically, from each particular culture. I have learned to pick the best from each culture while still being able to acknowledge the existence of traits or traditions I don’t approve. Human evolution is dependent on critical thinking. I have learned that as means of natural selection, the most generalized species have a better chance of survival, and the same goes for culture. I believe there is such a thing as a general human culture which may overlap the basic human needs, and then a society eventually adapts itself to the resources around it, making a different culture. My experiences reflect that when a culture changes it is not necessarily destroyed.
The word “immigrate” comes from the Old Latin word “immigratum,” proxy of imigrare which meant “to remove, go into, move in,” from the stem migrare, “to move.”
Some of us are intrinsically immigrants even if we never left our birth villages or returned after having left. We would feel compelled to remove, move and shift the status quo of our communities without ever departing.
Even when I was younger it never seemed challenging to claim more than one particular ethnicity or nationality. Now I realize given how I was raised, it could not have been any other way no matter where I grew up and I am grateful for that. Something I am still kneading in my mind: were it not for being raised in the United States–not the one now but the one I was brought to as a much younger person–this gratitude for an immigrant perspective would not come as easily, no matter the diversity other countries have to offer.
“But I too have ropes around my neck,
I have them to this day, pulling me
this way and that, East and West,
the nooses tightening, commanding,
I buck, I snort, I whinny, I rear, I kick.
Ropes, I do not choose between you.
Lassoes, lariats, I choose neither of you, and both.
Do you hear? I refuse to choose.”
–From East, West
I claim communities and not countries where ever I wander and the energy feels home.
I am married to the incredibly gifted artist Jamie Berry and live with him in his place of birth, New Mexico. For someone who never considered the institution of marriage a priority, it has been the best adventure. Prior to now I called New York City “home”. My family lives in California.
I don’t use Facebook. I use Twitter to share various content.