Dreams from My Father: The subject of Authenticity

I know in the last class, there was a discussion on whether or not Obama’s story was truly authentic. Well, I don’t know for sure if that claim is true or not, but the subject of authenticity is certainly worth delving into.I

I know I that the subject of authenticity dealt with whether or not Obama was actually the author  of the book, but I think there may be a deeper meaning in terms of the subject. There seems to be a struggle that Obama deals with, one that is not exactly a character struggle, but it’s a struggle to discover exactly what it is to be culturally (or racially) authentic. I think his experience at prep school demonstrates this quite exactly,as well as his experience in Chicago,where he is in turmoil over whether or not he should reveal that he is of a mixed race.

I guess  whether or not Obama is actually the one the wrote the book that will always be debated, but in terms of his cultural and racial identity, the struggle is clear. For example, his quest for seeking a community in Chicago, completely illustrates his desire to not only discover his identity, but to find some sort of a link to his family and his African American identity. I think the struggle with identity  hat he had in high school (and his actions because of it) reflects his need to seek ethnic authenticity. From what I gather, I think Obama’s own contentment with his cultural and racial background  led to the discovery and acceptance of his African American identity.

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