Another month gone, another Social Justice Book Club book under our belts. In March, the group read Enrique's Journey: The Story of a Boy's Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite With His Mother, by Sonia Nazario. The book, originally published in 2006, was revised and updated in 2014 to reflect the ever-changing story of immigration in the United States from Central America. The story began as a series in the Los Angeles Times (for which Nazario received a Pulitzer Prize for feature writing), and offers an in-depth account of one boy's journey from Honduras to reunite with his mother in the United States, often atop dangerous freight trains surging through Mexico.
The club discussions migrated to a few key themes. One, the somewhat surprising tone that Nazario took towards mothers (like Enrique's) who choose to leave their children when they head to the United States in search of opportunity (and a general sense of shock that Enrique encouraged similar behavior from his girlfriend after coming of age feeling like he'd been abandoned by his own mother). Two, the journalistic approach of Nazario's writing (versus some of the memoirs we've read previously for the club). I expect this particular discussion will continue as we continue to read books from multiple perspectives and points of view, so come hop on in if you're interested in participating.
For those interested in more reading on the topics of immigration raised in Enrique's Journey, consider the following:
Sonia Nazario's recent op-ed in The New York Times, "These Are Children, Not Bad Hombres"
and her recent TEDx talk:
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The April book for the Social Justice Book Club will be Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution, by Mona Eltahawy (and in case you really wanted to plan ahead, the May book will be Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, by Matthew Desmond). If you're already in the Slack, be sure to add yourself to the #headscarveshymen channel for this month's discussions. If you'd like an invite to the Slack, sign up here and we'll add you ASAP.