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Island of a Thousand Mirrors
A stunning literary debut set during the Sri Lankan Civil War
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Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

Created: 09/12/14

Replies: 5

Posted Sep. 12, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1336

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Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

This is a book partly about the process of immigration. Does immigration feature in your family’s history, and if so, how? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?


Posted Sep. 18, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mariannes

Join Date: 12/17/12

Posts: 206

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RE: Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

The sisters in the book had trouble adjusting socially at first. They felt they had to dress like everyone else. I saw new immigrants when I was teaching, and I could tell that they felt out of place initially. Of course, everybody wears jeans, immigrant or not!


Posted Sep. 21, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rebeccar

Join Date: 03/13/12

Posts: 294

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RE: Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

For anyone except 100% Native American ancestry, immigration - voluntary or forced - HAS to be a part of American family history. My family has ancestors that signed the Declaration of Independence whereas my husband's family came over just three generations ago. It is difficult for me to imagine what more recent immigration would be like. I do think it is interesting that for each wave of immigrants there are derogatory terms, stereotypes, and pecking orders.


Posted Sep. 21, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 279

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RE: Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

As rebeccar states, unless you're 100% Native American, you or your ancestors immigrated from another country. Mine came from Hungary in the aftermath of WWI (early 20th century). They were fortunate that a strong Hungarian community was present in the cities they settled in (probably why they chose those cities), and that at least one member of the family spoke English fluently. Their employment situation was remarkably different than that of the characters in the book, however, in that my relatives were farmers and so the only jobs they could get here were in factories. I would think it's more common for immigrants to end up with life-long, low-paying jobs than to eventually work in their chosen field.


Posted Oct. 01, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mal

Join Date: 09/09/13

Posts: 155

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RE: Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

Immigration is part of my family history. Achieving, making the best of yourself, taking every opportunity, striving for overachieving rather than mediocre. Ameri CAN <


Posted Oct. 06, 2014 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
LeahLovesBooks

Join Date: 04/08/14

Posts: 47

RE: Does immigration feature in your family’s history? Which parts of the immigration subplot seemed to ring especially true?

Almost any book with an immigration theme that I've read through a book group has great discussion on immigration. My husband has been in this country over 30 years and I've watched him still struggle with how he's caught between two countries. This isn't about loyalty to a country but the culture, upbringing, memories, etc.


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