Oodweyne

Nadifa Mohamed - On Roots And belonging in Brexit-defined UK's State of the Nation.

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Oodweyne   
WWW.BBC.CO.UK

Novelist Nadifa Mohamed explains why she’s now ready to call the UK home.

 

State of the Nation - Nadifa Mohamed

State of the Nation

Episode 2 of 5

In the second of a series of five talks by British novelists reflecting on the state of the nation, Nadifa Mohamed recalls her family’s arrival from Somalia when she was a young child and explains why it’s only now that’s she’s ready to call the UK home. The series also hears from Lionel Shriver, Howard Jacobson, James Meek and Jan Carson.

Producer: Jo Glanville
Editor: James Cook

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Oodweyne   

Hi Folks,

My word, she nailed it, really. And she did it evocatively and with almost hauntingly painful reflection of the past. In particularly the choices of life in which other will make for us when we are growing up as children. Similarly, she touched on (with added emphasis) of the onus of facing one's choices in life, unflinchingly, and without fleeing from them. No matter how poorly planned or executed they turn out to be in the end.

And then she rounded up with the "ambivalent sense" of not entirely knowing where one belong to, at least as one come of age as immigrant to another land that wasn't the one's original roots or where one's family used to considered "home". Which is something someone like her (and all of us in UK and in the Somali's diaspora) with deep roots in our respective homeland(s), must also feel in our bones and in our marrows, indeed.

However, ultimately she ended her raw emotional "reflection" in a matter of fact sort of "acceptable finality", by saying, that she actually consider herself as someone who is deeply, culturally, and all sense of it, emphatically belonging in here in UK. Brexit or no Brexit. 

Of course, in-order to do justice to her emotionally searing words, one has to also says that she interspersed that "final judgment" of hers with the deep evocation of using a "cinematic scene" from the movie Titanic. Which depicts the final scene of a man (one of the Engineers who build the ship) who decided to go down with the ship as his "final choice" of not fleeing the doomed liner. Hence, in a sense we are meant to draw from that "evocative scene" some sort of applicable "analogy" that tells us, that, she too, without any false note of sentimentality on her part, decided to grab her choices by the scruff of their neck and had chosen to stick it out (for good or bad) in dear Old Blighty. Like the manner many of us have already decided to do us, even if we lament the fact that UK seemed to have chosen to cut itself off from the deeper European's communal and political hinterland, by way of enacting this foolish policy of Brexit.

All in all, I really enjoyed that. For she has said what I felt about UK (at least for few years). And in particularly ever since Brexit took place. And although, I may not be man of few words (as many of you in here of SOL) can easily attest to, but still it's such a pleasure to hear your own "ambivalent feelings" towards UK read back to you with such elan and with such panache. Which is rather special since they are being told back to you as eloquently as she did managed to conveyed such raw feelings with no false note getting in the way. What a delightful thing it was in listening to that talk. Indeed it was, really.

I hope those of you who are British-Somali will lend an ear to this talk. Least of all, she says far more in eloquent manner and with a few taut words (limited by the allotted time of 14 minutes) about a "subject matter" that is as vast as it's also encompassing the very ideas of human's immigration throughout the ages, the bonds of cultural roots, and the human's yearning for a "settled and familiar belonging".

It was, indeed, a "subject-matter" that is as deep as the ocean itself. And yet, she acquitted herself in this task with telling panache and with palpably poised prose. Whilst at the same time doing a "deeper reflection" of the issue that is at hand than what all manner of "dusty tomes" of written treaties and philosophical discourses would have being able to managed it, or could even do justice to it.

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Oodweyne   
On 1/9/2020 at 1:40 AM, Che -Guevara said:

She looks hot in ciyaal xaafad kind of way.

What a hoodlum's argument. Or perhaps, to put it in generous sense, it could be said that it was a typical male's first line of thought, in the sense of always thinking in a rather boorish way. After all, here we have a woman who took pen to paper in-order to "surmise" (in less than 14 minutes flat) in-terms of what UK means to her as child of immigrant.

And how she defines the age-old-concept of "Belonging" and "Roots" in modern world with millions of people on the move from every where. What is "home" or where is it, any way.

And more specifically, does any one like her who landed in UK at the age of four (4) has moral case to make to say, Brexit or no Brexit, she belongs in here. Is there a "free choice" involve in all of this argument? Or is it something that could be said that it's out of her hand?

And what are the deeper reason in which to base that sort of argument(s) of hers other than to say I was brought up in here, in which she could make it in-order to consider herself as Brits as the red-buses of London.

These are really a "deep thoughts", although, they may not mean much to you. But, still, it's best - at least from time to time - to engage your mind before you decide to detain us with your odious waffle or with any of your tendentious spleen. This is what I reckon, mate. 

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As someone who doesn't live on that soaked island island, what she said doesn't interest me but she's good on the eye. Surely, you can see that.

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Oodweyne   

^^^^

Spoken like a man with a midget mind, as I knew you to be all along. After all, if it was otherwise, you would have known by now of how "universal" her thematic theme was from historical stand-point of every immigrant's person, who in turn is eternally struggling to know where "home" is.

But perhaps I took you to be someone of a "discerning mind", who in turn can take a narrower view of "one person's experience" and then easily "extrapolate" from that some sort of a "larger canvass" (or argument) to which universal theme can be had from it.

Try to see it in that way, mate. I am sure of it that even in your wretched life in Irish-Boston out there in America where you carry your hulking and sniffling self, can in turn be viewed from that "vantage point" of recent immigrant (at least as recently as late as 1990s) from the sordid land of the "grasping pirates" in the Somali peninsula, who in turn may be someone who is not really altogether so sure of where his "home" is in the "eternal sense" of that word.

Moreover, I am sure of it that such bewildering experience in which you may have led in Boston of America can be explained away, if only you peruse her experience in dear old Blighty (as analogy). And then see how that could be made as "applicable" to your lowly-station in life in the good Old USA.

I know and I get it that sometimes I get carried away around here of SOL with my dismissal wave of the hand, particularly towards the teeming ninnies like you with their empty arguments. But the honest truth is that I really do genuinely detest those with "mean intelligence" (like you). And those with no capacity whatsoever on their part to "fashion" a larger intellectual argument in any form of it other than to do nothing but "trolling tactics", particularly in any hotly-debated discussion in which they may find themselves in. Which is what you are doing right now in here.

And that is the reason I told you to really pipe it down a bit, mate, And in particularly, if ever you can't seems to engage your mind, fully, with the serious subject-matter that is at hand before you open your mouth.

And as for her "look" (not that I would want to dignify such slightly below the belt sort of snide comment), but I really think it's by the by sort of argument. For her "sharp mind" interest me only and mostly (after all, I have read all of her books). Not how much of such an alleged "looker" (or otherwise) she may be to you, or she may come across to anyone else, indeed.

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