Saturday, July 27, 2019

Many Voices, Many Rooms: Week 6

Highlights of the Week 
The Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich - Years ago I read - and loved - Louise Erdrich's early books: Love Medicine, The Beet Queen, and The Crown of Columbus (written with her late husband), but it has been years since I picked up one of her books. Recently my mom gave me a copy of this book, the first in a series about an Ojibwa girl named Omakayas. A spare, beautiful tale of life lived in community and with family according to the seasons, this book makes clear how much was lost when the white man ("chimookoman") "discovered" this land. I have already downloaded the second book from the library. This is another book I can't wait to share with students.

Crazy Rich Asians - After hearing about it for the past year, I finally watched this movie on the plane ride home from Brazil last week -- I also watched a sweet Brazilian rom com that I wanted to include here, but I didn't write the name down and no matter how much I search I just can't find it. Just know that there is a sweet Brazilian rom com out there about a man who forgets his girlfriend after she breaks up with him. If you find it, let me know the title! -- and I really enjoyed it. I was always put off by the "rich" in the title, thinking it was going to serve up standard Hollywood food, real estate, and fashion porn, but this is a movie that goes deeper than its title. In an article in Vox, Alex Abad-Santos calls it, "a thorny love story between assimilation and acceptance” and I think this is a perfect summary of the deeper message this movie embodies. For me the best part of the movie was discovering the force that is Awkwafina. She is now staring in a movie called The Farewell, which is getting amazing reviews. I can't wait to see it!

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