LOSS OF A HOMELAND: Insights of 'Strangers' for Teaching and Helping

  • Golie Jansen Assistant Professor, Eastern Washington University, WA
  • Marian Aguilar Associate Professor, University of Texas at Austin

Abstract

"I see you're from Urbana (University of Illinois), but where's your voice from?"This question asked in an elevator at a CSWE conference jolted my awareness. For a long time I have avoided taking a look at who I am, I can pass as a (white) American, work hard to fit in a foreign academic world... yet my voice keeps giving me away. I am different. I am a foreigner." (Diary fragment,Golie 1990)Time will never erase who I am. As a friend used to say to me "if you are not certain you are Black all you have to do is take a mirror and look at yourself and you will have had a 'Black Experience."' All I have to do is listen to myself and look at myself in the mirror and I have a "Latina experience." It is an experience that is half Mexican and half American. It is the color of coffee with cream. Yes, Cafe Aloud. It is the experience of being both at home and a stranger at the same time. (Marian)Copyright of Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping is the property of ClevelandState University and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to alistserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print,download, or email articles for individual use.

Author Biographies

Golie Jansen, Assistant Professor, Eastern Washington University, WA
Marian Aguilar, Associate Professor, University of Texas at Austin
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