Chatting One Book: The Buddha in the Attic, “A Disappearance”

By Michelle S. RSS Wed, March 13, 2013

It’s the final week of One Book, One Philadelphia, and we couldn’t be more excited to be welcoming Julie Otsuka for the Grand Finale celebration on Wednesday, March 13 at 7:30 p.m. at the Parkway Central Library. Don’t miss your chance to meet the author of The Buddha in the Attic and ask her any questions you may have about her wonderful novel!

The final section of the book—“A Disappearance”—features a shift in perspective from the collective voice of the Japanese women to the collective voice of their white American neighbors. This masterful shift sends the message that, now interned in camps, the Japanese women no longer have a public voice. And the neighbors who for so long took them for granted, looked down on them, or looked right through them have to now grapple with the loss of an entire community of people that enriched their lives in more ways than they once realized or acknowledged. The book left me thinking: Can a community of people ever really “disappear”? And what must it have felt like for the Japanese Americans to return to their communities after they were released from the camps?

What did you take away from “A Disappearance”? Share your thoughts in the comments! And don’t miss Wednesday’s Grand Finale!

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