Wednesday 19 August 2009

Dreams...

Oh rest assured, I am not going to talk about nightmares or sweet dreams I enjoy in my night sleep, and not even about the ones I might be seeing da(y)ily... and for that matter it isn't my dreams we are talking about...

I just finished a book by Barrack Obama, (ok I have to admit I got it right after US elections got over!) but didn't get around to reading it then. It's called Dreams From My Father, a book that mirrors the American dream, a lot of Indians will actually connect to it.
It is the life of Barrack Obama. Life as a black, life as a child who was a result of miscegenation: an American mom and an African father, an Afro-American... with separated parents. A single mother taking care of the child with just memories as a means of recalling the father, who had returned back to where he came from... Africa. It is the life of a young boy confused by apartheid, struggling to see why he was different from others' perspective, a brilliant child who they say inherited his father's brains, his father a sort of a leader of the Luo tribe back home in Africa. The book speaks at length about the racial discrimination of the blacks, right there in the heart of America, the America that stood as a symbol of world power even back then... (the book was written when he was in Harvard Law School and republished when he became a senator).

Obama, as a priviliged kid felt that he should be giving back to the black community, been brought up mostly by his grandparents, he hasn't seen the days most young kids get exposed to and fall into the trap of a world that leads nowhere... drugs,booze,fag! Yet he did experiment, he did fall and he did get up back on his feet... The rest of the book tells the story of how he traced back his roots, went to Africa to see the relatives he had never met, to meet the cousins he hadn't heard of, and to visit the lands that somewhere he knew were never going to be his...

I would be the last person to glorify Obama as a President, because as far as I am concerned, he still has a lot to live up to, if he has to be great in my eyes. But as an author, and as a person who has endured so much, who has been given so much agony and who has but triumphed over them, he deserves a lot of respect.

The book deals with a lot of stuff that I, as an Indian would probably never understand, because whatever else we've seen, we haven't seen apartheid, we haven't seen a lot of these things... or maybe I live a life toooo protected... I dunno...

In the wake of what happened with SRK, I wanted to write a post but couldn't decide where my commitments lay coz arguments from both the sides sound extremely convincing. Infact, if someone asked me to participate in a debate on it, I might speak for the motion i.e. for the justification of the detaining, but somewhere deep, my heart tries to point out Iraq and its jail incidents, it tries to point out to New York(the movie) and how the innocent too suffer, it points out the sham America pretends to be when it champions the cause of human rights, lecturing other nations about it, when time and again there have been allegations that the US has always always acted in its own political interest and I can't say I have found all of them to be false!!!

But ladies and gentlemen, the House is open for the debate, and lets pray the attendance here is better than what Indian Parliament witnesses...



15 comments:

Mads said...

Loved the book review. It was very neutral and smart. Try sending it to your college magazine or something. Or let me plagiarize it and send it to my law journal :D *bates eyelashes*

coming to the SRK thingy, you are so right. as we had a (g)talk on it....both the sides of the coin seem justified.Makes me confused on which to support.
good post :)

Ashish said...

Barrack Obama may not be the one of the greatest leaders of the modern world but he is certainly a man of dynamic personality.

I also don't overate him like the journalists and politicians in the world.

However, the thing is to be the most powerful person of the world, it takes guts and metal.

I know how difficult is to be the vice president(head of the student body ) at IIT Kgp....


Just immagine the president of USA...


WOW!!!

and m sure gonnna read this book after a superb review by you..


take care

Anurag said...

Really nice review...You love doing reviews ..don't ya :P

Coming back to the post...Yes B.O has come a long way but it what we take back with us after reading this book is the most important thing of all :)

P.S :-> You blocked me off gtalk kya :( :( :(

Priti R said...

No. Both sides are not justified. The authorities are right in doing their duty. Safety comes first.
For instance, "we"- amma, appa,pappu and I were frisked "completely" for an hour in colombo. That too twice! Not just there. Even on the streets , we were doubly checked than others. Obviously because we are tams and they have had the ltte issue.
shahrukh khan- i dont care really, But APJ too. Both humans and i think their "art" shouldnt interfere with anything else. rules are rules.

Akansha Agrawal said...

@Mads
You're free to take it... My college magazine is too farcical for this...

yeah, thank you :)

Akansha Agrawal said...

@Ashish
Hmmm... yeah I don't envy him for the tasks he faces...

Thank you for the compliment... :)

Akansha Agrawal said...

@Anurag
Yeah... doing reviews is my kind of thing...

Well, we've had a talk about it at length... toh I don't know what's left... to say here... :)

Akansha Agrawal said...

@Priti
Always the digressor... :D

Yeah rules are rules... but there has to be a limit to rules too... we revolt when there are college rules we don't like, don't we? How would it look if tom we went to the US and we were detained for being Indians... and by detaining I don't mean only being stopped... there are detention centres too... and you know what I am referring to... *makes a point*

Priti R said...

If it is happening to me, it is happening to other " doubtfuls" too. I can go on my trip saying, "yeah, atleast i wont die here!"

Thousif Raza said...

will have to check in on that, nice review, and its very very good to see you back blogging regularly, i like it

you still havent replied to my emails, but no matter, and i still have to see you on my blog ;),


take care and keep writing..............

AMIT said...

Barack Obama might change America Life in coming days.

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Harshita said...

Inspires me to buy the book and start reading it right-away... but ofcourse, I am going to do that in near future.

Loved the review.

As for the SRK thing, I have been outside India including US a couple of times, and I think it is just a security measure.

As for New York-the movie and the people who were illegally detained, India mein bhi toh log boltey hain aur hum dekhtey hain that innocents are killed and detained... and I dont see a diff... coz wen it happens to us it is racism and when we do it, it is just...

US has not stopped us frm frisking their stars or VIPs...and frankly, I have seen more Americans being questioned while passing thru security check in US.. may be it was for THAT day only...

If we lack security measures, we shud not cry and say,"humaarey saat aisa kyun kiya", instead we shud learn to bring up our security steps to that level. :)

R S said...

to be frank, Barack might end up doing much less than what is expected from him..
it may be because we expect too much...

as far as Shahrukh thingy is concerned, I dare speaking that USA authorities are right...after that 9-11 thing..

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workhard said...

Thats a very good review.. Now im tempted to read...

Have u read the book Roots by Alex Haley..

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