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Dinaw Mengestu's Home At Last

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An Essay on Dinaw Mengestu’s Essay “Home at Last”
In a globalized world where cultures mix and clash across oceans and borders, the true meaning of home has become a lot more unclear, which has resulted in feelings of confusion and discord among the people with roots all across the world. Dinaw Mengestu deals with these feelings in his essay “Home at Last”, which was published in the anthology Brooklyn Was Mine in 2008. This essay will analyze Mengestu’s essay “Home at Last” with focus on how Mengestu explores the concept of home and experiences loneliness and the structure of the essay.

In the beginning of “Home at Last”, Mengestu explains how he do not feel like he belongs in the Ethiopian community and culture as he left Ethiopia behind
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But he did not feel like he fit into the Ethiopian community either as he felt he was not black enough to be a part of the community. Mengestu’s parents’ iron grip of the past and hopes of returning to Ethiopia has affected Mengestu in the sense that Mengestu as an adult struggle with finding a place to call home. Because of Mengestu’s struggle with finding a place to call home, he moved at the age of 21 to a neighborhood in Brooklyn called Kensington, which is a melting pot of different cultures and backgrounds, in the hope of finally finding a place to settle down and call home. Although Kensington has a rich history of immigrants from various countries across the world settling down and finding new places to call home, Mengestu did not feel completely at home in Kensington either. At first, Mengestu spent a lot of time walking around Kensington, just like his father in Peoria throughout Mengestu’s childhood, to stave off some of the loneliness he experienced in Kensington. A lot of Mengestu’s time in Kensington was also spent on just observing the people of Kensington and how they, a bunch of people with very different backgrounds, had managed to create a place to call home, where ethnicity, nationality and background did not matter, which almost seemed like a safe haven to Mengestu who had always been haunted
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