The Reading Life: Budi Darma’s “People from Bloomington”

All Things Books / Review

About People from Bloomington,
Written by Kat at Thornfield Hall Redux, and was originally published in Personal Blog,
May 11, 2022


I highly recommend the Indonesian writer Budi Darma's People from Bloomington, a collection of short stories newly translated by Tiffany Tsao.  Like Darma, I attended graduate school in Bloomington, a beautiful, idyllic college town in Indiana, so I was curious about this book.  Although as a midwesterner I "assimilated" effortlessly, and loved the culture so much I would never have left had there had been any jobs, Darma, a student from Java, was isolated and lonely.  I am horrified by the descriptions of xenophobia in some of the stories: even when  Americans are friendly, there is a distance between cultures.

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