Do you know the untold hidden truth and events of America? The book “A Different Mirror” reveals the fact and history that was in undercover for a long time. If Ronald Takaki didn’t start writing the book then we may never know how America becomes a multicultural country.
The books talk about the cultural history America used to hold and how it turns into a multicultural country in time. It discusses how people from all around the globe came to America. The book explores all the matters and facts that affect the history of American culture.
Ronald Takaki was an American historian. He was a popular figure before the book came out but later he became one of the best histories researchers ever. In 1994 when it first came out, the book “A Different Mirror” received Anisfield-Wolf Book Award.
The best thing about the book is, it’s talking about history and provide info but while reading it, you will feel like reading literature. Anyway, here we prepare a short review of the book. So, let’s start.
Summary of A Different Mirror
A Different Mirror is one of the most notable books on American history. It helps a lot to reduce the racial crisis of America and gave proper answered to those arrogant white people. It reveals the real history of America that everyone almost forgets.
The book brings out the forgotten part of the American society that took place before European came into America. The most common conception in America was, they all came from European nations, the European are their ancestors and the civilisation of America was built by the Europeans.
But that’s a very big misconception. Takaki is probably the one who first speaks out about it. In his book, he shows that before the white European came into America, the local Indian and American people civilised their nation. The begging of the American journey wasn’t just started with British Royal flash and Afro-American slaves.
Since the growth of America, it was a multicultural country. Native Americans, African Americans, Mexican Americans, Irish Americans, Asian Americans, Jewish Americans, and many more ethnic immigrant groups used to come to America for making a good fortune. And these working people formed a multicultural nationality in America.
A Different Mirror PDFA different Mirror
Analysis of A Different Mirror
Takaki divided the book into four main thematic periods and entitled them Foundations,” “Contradictions,” “Transitions,” and “Transformations”. He talked about the rich multicultural event that took place all over America and how America becomes one of the great nations for this diverse culture.
In the book, Takaki shows, how people from different cultures try to act like Americans and the effort they give to be involved with American culture. The book also shows the strong bond between interethnic people to survive against the oppression of bigoted society. Everyone’s most favourite and amazing part of the book is when it talks about the society that none of us was aware of. Takaki provides evidence of the existence of many cultures through folklore, poems, songs, letters etc.
Story behind writing of A Different Mirror
The story of writing ” A different Mirror” has a long history. The whole childhood and all the life experiences he face, made the author create a legendary book. To know the story behind Takaki’s writing we have to go back to the late 50s and 60s.
At the beginning of Takaki’s life, he spends his childhood in Hawaii. He finished his school life and primary education there. At the beginning stage of his life, he wasn’t much serious about education. He used to be a surfer and wanted to make a good career on this platform. But luck has written something else for him. And Takaki’s whole life changed with his religion class.
Takaki had to take a religion class in school, two days a week. Dr Sun Jhi Nishi PhD used to take that class. When Takaki met the teacher he felt something new. In an interview session, Takaki said that it was the first he saw any Asian American PhD holder.
At that time, Takaki didn’t know what PhD mean. After returning from school he asked his mom about what is PhD. Takaki’s mom could give him a satisfying answer but she told Takaki that he must be a very educated and wise man.
Takaki was very much inspired and impressed with the personality and knowledge of his teacher. He formed a very good relationship with his teacher. Takaki’s teacher always asked him, how do you know that you know. And this question made him realize how little our knowledge is.
Sun Jhi Nishi helped Takaki to get admission to an Ohio university. There Takaki faced a cultural shock. From experience and he learned the history and then began writing his book.