Nathan Schultz Make Your Home Among Strangers Blog Post

The book Make Your Home among Strangers  is an interesting and telling story about the Cuban experiences in American and more specifically a first generation Cuban attending a predominantly white and wealthy college. The heart of this work lies with the main character, Lizaet dealing with internal and external struggles with her own identity and her life. 

Internally she struggles with her own identity of being Cuban in a predominantly white college and therefore she feels out of place and to an extent feel as if she betrayed her family going to Rawlings. As at college she is treated as the “token” cuban and is tired of the distitigon benign require to be the authority of matters cuban. This caused an issue as she may not want to be cuban any more.

Externally her struggles are the manifestation of internal and family issues. This is shown by her academic performance and how in the first semester at college, she does not perform well. This is due to the pressure and stressors that exist in her life as being a fish out of water in a sense. I think it boils down to a respect idea, as she did not receive the same amount of respect from her classmates as the rest of the students there. This is proved by how her second semester goes with having her biology professor treat her well and offer her an internship. At that point, she did receive the respect that she wished as being an equal to the rest of her classmates. Make Your Home Among Strangers tells a story that has probability played out in the real world thousands of times, but this provides the internal experience for someone trying to exist in modern US society.

As for the book burnings in Georgetown, to be honest I believe that it is blown out of proportion. From the CNN article that was shown in class and where the story was reported it compares the burning of a handful of books in an outside grill to the mass book burning during 1933 by the Nazis which is absurd. I believe it is an isolated case possibly even related to the required reading and some irate students. As the main discontent of the situation by a student that questioned the credibility of the Crucet as being able to write and the struggles in her book. This an insulated case that is not indicative of a larger theme of anti-immigration/ Cuban sentiment in Georgetown as one of the students cited in the articles stated how even the university promotes diversity so it was not even an attack. Obviously, it is bad to burn books, but it is not as drastic or as apocalyptic as CNN or others make it out to be as it was one a few individuals most likely acting out of frustration rather than some racist ideology.

4 thoughts on “Nathan Schultz Make Your Home Among Strangers Blog Post

  1. Being a “token” minority is a very common occurrence, usually falling on Black students at University. I think your mention of this area of the narrative is important because yes, while it did contribute to Lizet’s own animosity against her race, her more so reflected her race is the predominance of all of Lizet’s social encounter, in and out of the classroom in her new home at Rawlings. However, I think it is an ignorant argument to make that this was the sole factor which contributed to Lizet’s discontent with her own race. The prejudice faced, barring her from opportunities before she even gets the chance to create an identity for herself; being Cuban was the primary element her family presents, obligating her to abandon her dreams and pursuits of success in America to instead enclave with the family; already having an impression on the administration in the plagiarism legal incident because of the color of her skin, so many factors, so many experiences had contributed to Lizet’s distaste of her Cuban identity. Also, just because she had a more fair experience without less discrimination her second semester, did not indicate to me the light at the university was switched at institutional racism suddenly dissipated.

    Lastly, I find your opinion on the Georgetown book burnings of this novel extremely challenging as your argue that the couple individuals involved to not represent the many of the university and that their motivations were not driven by anti-immigration and anti-racism beliefs. You claim the individuals were acting out of frustration, but not racist sentiment. Then what on Earth were the individuals involved frustrated about in your opinion? This amazing novel about an immigrat constantly challenged by her racial origins and still dedicated her life and loyalty to find success in America? Oh yes, how frustrating! That is the school of thought by privileged white students who figure they are more entitled to opportunity in America than anyone else, especially immigrants. That is anti-immigrant, racist sentiment. Also, if you have ever been in a work uniform or a sports uniform and you act out of deviance, the universal rule of thumb is that act out of deviance represents the organization you are representing as well, so obviously Georgetown did not instill their efforts to diversity well-enough if they have students resisting.

  2. I disagree with your opinion of the book burnings at Georgia Southern University because although it may seem isolated and inconsequential, it’s not a trend we want to bring back. Book burnings, regardless of the book or who’s doing the burning, are part of the oppression of free speech, and should be taken seriously especially when they’re burning the book of an immigrant. Finally, book burnings will always remind people of the Holocaust, and for good reason, because they were used by the Nazis to turn popular sentiment against Jews, and in turn, intellectualism. Book burnings *should* bring images of the Holocaust to mind, because it’s concerning if they don’t.

  3. Make sure that you check your facts. The institution in question was Georgia Southern, not Georgetown.

    I would recommend that you self-reflect on the concept of white privilege and why your comments above might be perceived as such by your classmates.

  4. Similarly to some of the other commenters, I disagree with your paragraph about the Georgia Southern student’s actions being blown out of proportion. Oftentimes, hate and ferocity stems out of smaller events that gain momentum, and while that did seem to be a single isolated incident, I believe that it was representative of some of the thoughts that some people today still wrongly have towards immigrants.

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