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An urgent collection of essays by first and second-generation immigrants, exploring what it's like to be othered in an increasingly divided America.
From Trump's proposed border wall and travel ban to the marching of White Supremacists in Charlottesville, America is consumed by tensions over immigration and the question of which bodies are welcome. In this much-anticipated follow-up to the bestselling UK edition, hailed by Zadie Smith as "lively and vital," editors Nikesh Shukla and Chimene Suleyman hand the microphone to an incredible range of writers whose humanity and right to be here is under attack.
- Chigozie Obioma unpacks an Igbo proverb that helped him navigate his journey to America from Nigeria.
- Jenny Zhang analyzes cultural appropriation in 90s fashion, recalling her own pain and confusion as a teenager trying to fit in.
- Fatimah Asghar describes the flood of memory and emotion triggered by an encounter with an Uber driver from Kashmir.
- Alexander Chee writes of a visit to Korea that changed his relationship to his heritage.
These writers, and the many others in this singular collection, share powerful personal stories of living between cultures and languages while struggling to figure out who they are and where they belong. By turns heartbreaking and hilarious, troubling and uplifting, the essays in The Good Immigrant come together to create a provocative, conversation-sparking, multivocal portrait of America now.
"This collection is a resounding success on multiple fronts. Its
righteous rage is perfectly matched by its literary rewards...a surround-sound
chorus that bristles with an unpredictable, electric energy...Each essay is a tantalizing introduction -- and invitation
-- to the larger body of work these artists have already created and will
continue to make long after this moment passes. What unites this defiant chorus
of immigrant voices is best expressed in this variation on an enduring line by
Langston Hughes: 'We, too sing America.'"—The Washington Post
"The strength of this collection is in its
diversity-of gender, sexuality, privilege, experience, and writing style. A
gift for anyone who understands or wants to learn about the breadth of
experience among immigrants to the U.S., this collection showcases the joy,
empathy, and fierceness needed to adopt the country as one's own."—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"Immigration has become a hot-button issue in
America for all the wrong reasons (see: racists), and The Good Immigrant
is the perfect antidote to all the hate. Through essays
from first- and second-generation immigrants like Jenny Zhang, Chigozie Obioma,
Fatimah Asghar, and more, you'll get a whole new perspective on everything from
'90s fashion to Uber drivers."—PopSugar
offer affecting personal essays about adapting to daily life in the United
States while also retaining their identities forged by foreign cultures...There
are no weak links in this well-curated book."—Kirkus Reviews"
As engaging as it is
necessary, especially in today's political climate."—Paste
"A timely and important read, filled with
gorgeous writing."—Woman's DayPraise for The Good Immigrant (UK):
"The Good Immigrant is a lively and vital intervention into the
British cultural conversation around race. Instead of statistics and dogma we find
real human experience and impassioned argument - and it's funny and
"An important, timely
read."—J. K. Rowling
"To say the publication of The Good Immigrant
has come at a good time would be an understatement ... If 2016 has left you feeling helpless, desperately wondering what you can do to repair the damage of anti-immigration rhetoric, then reading it would be a good place to start: it leaves you feeling armed with empathy."—Vice