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Blog Post 9/7

This week’s reading brought a breath of fresh air. In contrast to our previous readings, Michael Twitty gives us a personal account of his childhood and adult life as a black, Jewish, homosexual man. ¬†Although Michael didn’t live during the period of time we were previously reading about, I still found his dialogue extremely interesting and thought-provoking.

Like Twitty, I have a similar experience to growing up in a certain culture. My mother’s side of the family is from New Orleans, Louisianna since her ancestors immigrated here 4 generations ago. I grew up in the rich culinary tradition that many people from the Bayou possess. ¬†Whether it’s Jambalaya, crawfish boils, or king cake during Marti Gras, our culture is one I have a ton of respect for.

Unlike Michael, however, I never went through the hardships he went through. I am very grateful to be able to find where my ancestors came from, something Michael was not able to do. I did not have to deal with rejection as he did when he came out to his mother. And of course, I never had to face any kind of prejudice or racial stereotypes that he had to throughout his life. Despite all of this, it is remarkable how Michael embraces his culture and has a deep reverence to those who have gone before him, even though he may never know who they are.

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  1. Madeline Orr Madeline Orr

    I also enjoyed reading his story from his own perspective and hearing a new voice talk about this subject. I cannot imagine the pain and frustration he has gone through not knowing his old family history or his true origins. When he was younger he was always surrounded by the food, images, music, and people but he never had a true appreciation for his culture until he started cooking. I also loved reading how he embraced his culture, felt more connected to his family, and how he really found himself when he was in the kitchen.

  2. Sara Moushegian Sara Moushegian

    I also enjoyed reading Twiddy’s narratives. I loved how he was so descriptive of everything; it truly made his cultural practices come to life as I read it. I actually learned a lot more about African culture through these passages. While reading, I realized I did not grow up learning much about my heritage and experiencing specific cultural foods and practices. I am Armenian, but I honestly could not tell you any special Armenian dish, or really anything special about the culture. That being said, this does not compare to what Twiddy has endured. I could find out more about my ancestors and culture if I was motivated to, but unfortunately, Twiddy and many other African Americans do not have that luxury.

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