Nonfiction Book Club - The Girl at the Baggage Claim

Join us to discuss an exploration of selfhood as seen from different cultural perspectives.

Drawing on personal accounts and current research, novelist Gish Jen delivers an insightful, witty  look at the struggle between independence and interdependence. 

As East and West become more and more entwined, we also continue to baffle one another. What's more important--self-sacrifice or self-definition? Do we ultimately answer to something larger than ourselves--a family, a religion, a troop? Or is our mantra "To thine own self be true"?

Gish Jen, drawing on a trove of personal accounts and cutting-edge research, shows how our worldviews are shaped by what cultural psychologists call "independent" and "interdependent" models of selfhood. Coloring what we perceive, remember, do, make, and tell, imbuing everything from our ideas about copying to our conceptions of human rights, these models help explain why the United States produced Apple while China created Alibaba--and what that might mean for our shared future. As engaging as it is fascinating, The Girl at the Baggage Claim is a book that profoundly transforms our understanding of ourselves and our time.

Our next meeting will be October 24, when we will discuss Tell Me How It Ends by Valeria Luiselli.