Tag Archives: culture

mid-week round-up

What have you been up to friends? On Saturday, our friends from Kentucky passed through on their way home from The Keys and we had a lovely time visiting with them. I love having visitors from further north to remind us that it IS a darn delight to eat outdoors in January. 🙂 Also, loving my little Internet community who chimed in on my posts about decluttering and mornings. Makes me feel like we’re all in this life thing together and everyone is doing their best to figure it out! In that same vein, check out this post from Danie and this one from Jasmin. Have a great rest of your day, and here’s some more reading material…

Is “RuPaul’s Drag Race” the most radical show on TV?

Related: 5 reasons I can’t get enough RuPaul.

Which color would you choose for February?

How Aly Raisman’s leadership reformed women’s gymnastics – and heralded Larry Nassar’s downfall.

Nine humanitarian activists face federal charges after leaving water for migrants in the Arizona desert.

How the app “Chat!” is making STD and contraception information into a game and helping Cambodian garment workers at the same time.

Where does great culture come from? How do you build and sustain it in your group, or strengthen a culture that needs fixing? This book has answers.

Kesha’s 2018 Grammys performance was even braver than you might realize.

12 excellent graphic novel recommendations.

Related: And one more for good measure.

The more we study dolphins, the brighter they turn out to be. (Old article but I thought it was interesting.)

A prize launched for thrillers that don’t involve violence against women.

The far out history of how hippie food spread across America.

Related: Hippie Food: How Back-to-the-Landers, Long Hairs, and Revolutionaries Changed the Way We Eat by Jonathan Kauffman

“The Husband Stitch” isn’t just a horrifying childbirth myth.

P.S. If you liked these articles, consider following me on Facebook! I post interesting links throughout the week. 🙂 

Advertisements

mid-week round-up

What are you up to this week, my loves? As my Whole30 winds down, I’ve been researching ways to bring pizza back into my life in a less gluten-y, dairy-filled fashion. Have you ever tried making a cauliflower crust? It just seems like so much work! Might have to load up on the pre-made version on our next trip to Trader Joe’s. (Can you tell I’m missing celebratory Pizza Friday’s??) Hope your Wednesday is wonderful, and here are some links for your mid-week enjoyment…

The Duffer brothers thought they’d flamed out in Hollywood. Then they came up with Stranger Things.

Another post-Whole30 baked good I’m itching to make.

How the Ikea catalogue cracked what ‘domestic bliss’ means in different cultures.

The bunkers built to survive an apocalypse.

For families divided by the border, there is one place where they are allowed to come together–almost.

Society would be worse without gossip.

Related: I stopped paying women compliments on their appearance and here’s what happened.

A book about a futuristic Joan of Arc that looks right up my street.

Texas prisons ban books by Langston Hughes and Bob Dole – but ‘Mein Kampf’ is ok.

Behind the scenes with YouTube’s De’arra and Ken 4 Life.

How cute are these PJ’s?

A resistance led by celebrities will always be bullshit.

Millions of bananas arrive every week in NYC. It takes a lot to get them from the boat to the bodega.

P.S. A few Finding delight posts you may have missed — Recipe: Banana Nut Baked Oatmeal and Simple Cure: Drink More Water.

P.P.S. Hop on over to my Finding Delight Reader Survey! I’m planning new content and would LOVE your input. Thanks a mil! xoxo

Book Review: The Newlyweds by Nell Freudenberger

the-newlywedsIn light of the recent immigration ban, reading stories of those who have navigated across cultures to a new life in the United States seems even more important. Even when those stories appear in the novel you turn to when you need a break from the world.

Stories, like the one found in The Newlyweds by Nell Freudenberger, humanize the immigrant experience. The book follows Amina Mazid who leaves her home in Bangladesh for a new life in New York. While her story is not one of religious persecution or civil war, she is in search of happiness. A different happiness than what she can find in Bangladesh. The same happiness so many are seeking when they step onto American soil. But like the immigrants before (and after) her, Amina must carve out a space for herself amidst her American reality and the other happiness she knew before. A home she can never forget.

Amina Mazid is twenty-four when she moves from Bangladesh to Rochester, New York, for love. A hundred years ago, Amina would have been called a mail-order bride. But this is the twenty-first century: she is wooed by—and woos—George Stillman online.
 
For Amina, George offers a chance for a new life for her and her parents, as well as a different kind of happiness than she might find back home. For George, Amina is a woman who doesn’t play games. But each of them is hiding something: someone from the past they thought they could leave behind. It is only when Amina returns to Bangladesh that she and George find out if their secrets will tear them apart, or if they can build a future together.

At it’s core, this book is a rather nuanced portrait of a young woman’s transition from one culture to another. This theme reminded me of another great book, The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri. And I think fan’s of Lahiri’s work will also find value in picking up a copy of The Newlyweds.

Freudenberger shows an immense depth of knowledge about Bangladesh, it’s culture, and Islam. The acknowledgements section of the book makes it clear that she did her research by way of extensive interviews and immersive travel to the country itself. (Even more amazing? This research, and the subsequent novel, was inspired by a Bangladeshi woman Freudenberger met on a plane! #talktostrangers)

However, there is a note of inauthenticity to the story, most notably the character of Amina herself. Freudenberger explains the duality that I’m sure many immigrants experience…

“[Amina] had thought that she’d been born with a soul whose thoughts were in no particular dialect, and she’d imagined that, when she married, her husband would be able to recognize this deep part of herself. Of course she hadn’t counted on her husband being a foreigner…In a way, George had created her American self, and so it made sense that it was the only one he would see.”

And perhaps it is this duality, which Freudenberger explains but hasn’t experienced, that makes Amina’s character lack just an inkling of depth. Because, at the end of the day, Amina’s husband George didn’t create her American self, the author did.

The story itself is captivating and full of suspense. It is an entertaining depiction of the effects of honesty (or lack thereof) on relationships and navigating cross-cultural experiences. Check it out! 

Have you read The Newlyweds? Would you? Let me know below!

P.S. Books to read if you love the Commonwealth and a book I could NOT put down.