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Leaving Home, building community: Author addresses homesickness in novel

Written by Candace King
11/14/2013

Brooklyn

The book chosen for the college’s First Year Reading Initiative this year was Brooklyn, by Colm Tóibín, a renowned author and professor at Columbia University. In the novel he discusses the struggles immigrants face when leaving their homeland to come to America.

Tóibín came to the college on October 7 to discuss his inspiration for the novel and the issue of homesickness. In the novel, the main character embarks on a journey from Ireland to New York. When she finally arrives, she quickly realizes how much she misses home. As she receives letters from her mother and sister, she begins to feel homesick.

"I feel like it relates perfectly to what a lot of first-year students go through," said Joshua DuFour, a freshman music major and Martin Luther King Scholar.

Leaving home for college can be an exciting, yet nerve-wracking process for many high school seniors. For some of them, this is the first time they will be spending such an extended period of time away from their homes and their families. While Ithaca College may not be a continent away, the experience of feeling homesick is not uncommon.

"Being from Tucson, Arizona, I'm not an immigrant, but I definitely do feel a lot of the same things that the book brings up,” said Victor Lopez-Carmen, a freshman health sciences major and Martin Luther King Scholar from Arizona. 



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