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Imaginary Homelands

 

In his essay, “Imaginary Homelands,” Salman Rushdie describes our remembrances of past homelands as like a broken mirror with some of the fragments lost forever. That act of revisiting the past, he writes, is more a study in memory and forgetting than an accurate recreation of what was. 

 

Visited by ancestors from their Asian heritage, 

Yukie Shiroma, Norman Kaneshiro, and Kenny Endo, navigate their way through a distant and imagined past with new dance and music creations.

“But human beings do not perceive things whole; we are not gods but wounded creatures, cracked lenses, capable only of fractured perceptions. Partial beings, in all the senses of that phrase. Meaning is a shaky edifice we build out of scraps, dogmas, childhood injuries, newspaper articles, chance remarks, old films, small victories, people hated, people loved; perhaps it is because our sense of what is the case is constructed from such inadequate materials that we defend it so fiercely, even to the death.” 

 

“It may be argued that the past is a country from which we have all emigrated, that its loss is part of our common humanity.”

 

“Sometimes we feel we straddle two cultures; at other times, that we fall between two stools.”

 

~Salman Rushdie “Imaginary Homelands: Essays and Criticism 1981-1991”

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