“Diaspora Christmas” short story by NoViolet Bulawayo
I had recently read NoViolet Bulawayo’s novel, “We Need New Names”, and was fortunate to have the opportunity of reading some of her short stories on her blog. The one I focused on reading was “Diaspora Christmas”, which I was drawn too specifically for the time of year now and was interested in a different perspective of this huge holiday. The story focuses on the main issue with the holiday, such as being a wealthy consumer, and also the experience of migration and vacationing. She specifically highlights what it is like to live in a country people vacation to, yet addresses these foreigners dissatisfactions, such as becoming sick of different, native food and fearful of the land. While this short story is in fact very short, it quickly can point out the literal diaspora of the holiday season where everyone is moving, attempting to get away from their everyday and experience a different, more exotic setting. A holiday that seems to be rooted in togetherness and stresses the importance of giving and family, many people see it as an opportunity to expel their wealth, buying plane tickets and gifts. The story also touches quickly on the idea of white tourists in Africa and how they take pictures to prove their experience was real. Again, although this story is very simple, it touches on such broad issues.
Also, something really cool that I found on her blog was a quote she had in the margin. “Let no one be fooled by the fact that we may write in English, for we intend to do unheard of things with it.” by Chinua Achebe. I thought this was really interesting because it really pertains to this course as a whole and the purpose of African writing and encouraging people to learn from it.
Her Blog: http://novioletbulawayo.blogspot.com/