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Independent Study Progress

onewhowalks's picture

Managed to not post last week, but I want to do/am doing my independent study around third culture individuals, nationalty and the role it plays (or doesn't, or is assumed to) within identity, privilege surrounding questions around From-ness... stuff like that. I'll be using Americanah and a TEDtalk by Taiye Selasi, "Don't ask where I'm from, ask where I'm local," as my primary texts. I will be supplementing these with texts from Taiye Selasi's reading list attached to the TEDtalk, like Moustafa Bayoumi's ""Where are you from' is not the right question" and Josef Joffe's "Rethinking the Nation-State: The Many Meanings of Sovereignty," as well as the reading list as a text of its own. I will also be delving back into notes and readings from the Globalism class I took with Craig Borowiak last Fall, such as "Why is the World Divided Territorially?" by Stuart Elden, "Strategic Inauthenticity" by Timothy Taylor and "Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy" by Arjun Appadurai. I think it will be really interesting to re-read these articles through lenses of locality, privilege, and Americanah. I am also going to be pulling in some articles on Third Culture Kids, such as "What You're Really Asking When You Ask 'Where Are You From?'" by Tanvi Misra and "Third Culture Kids" by Bilal Ahmed, as well as the Denizen Magazine website (created by and for TCK and holds regular TCK conferences) and TCK World website (aka "The Official Home of Dr. Ruth Hill Useem, who first coined the term 'Third Culture Kids.'") I think that looking at analysis of TCK (starting to think about privilege in who gets to decide what they're called, cultural and political fluidity, as well as the past/present/future of 'home'/'from'/being - where are you from, can you return there, is from-ness something carried with you) as well as the origins of the term and who it was/is aimed at. 

I want to be done (re)reading/annotating by Friday night, Sunday night at latest. So far I've (re)read Americanah, the TEDtalk, the two critical TCK articles, and the Appadurai. 



Anne Dalke's picture

I'm glad we’ll be talking this morning, onewhowalks, about this ambitious project, which includes a number of texts that are new to me (and that I’m eager to view). You’ve got a number of threads going here (perhaps too many?) so I’m curious to hear how you might untangle (for instance) third culture identity, nationality, and the privilege of “from-ness”—or whether one of the points of your project will actually be to assert their essential entangledness.

Also unclear to me @ this point what the role of Americanah might be in your paper: are you thinking that the various readings from your globalism class (for instance) will illuminate the dynamics in the novel, or that the novel might unsettle those claims, or something something more bi-directional, in which each interrogates the other? Over the weekend, please share your reading notes here--I'm eager to learn more. A