Wednesday, October 19, 2005

On Exile

The first time I was in college, there was a book for one of my classes called "Altogether Elsewhere: Writers On Exile." European writers, mostly, and most of them Eastern European, because the class was on Russian writers, and because the wars of the 20th century produced so very many exiles from that part of the world.

They wrote about leaving their homes. And they wrote about living as exiles in Paris or New York. And they wrote about wishing to return to the cities whence they had come.

What they did not write upon was their actual returning, because mostly they never did return. And they did not write upon the American South, because they did not know it.

And so I found it difficult to relate to their experiences.

For though you might not think it possible to be an exile in your own country, America is big enough, and American society mobile enough, that it is. But being free, from time to time we do have the luxury of going home.

And so to this I can relate.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link!



11:55 PM  

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