Part 2: Being an International Student

N.B: composite narratives of International students I dialoged with.

Relationally, most see you as some piece of meat that needed to be cooked and consumed. You are called exotic; this adulation is fueled by the national geographic magazine which depicts you as hypersexual body whose primary role is to have sex. Because of your exoticness, on campus you were expected to join in with random hook ups with any guy/ girl who desires to sex you up, getting drunk on Thursday nights is acceptable amongst your peers, students would insult their professors for correcting their many errors. When you protested against such negative behaviors, your school mates laughed and called you, “third world, brown-nose, kiss-ass bitch”, they even went further to say, “you needed to get out of your closed little world, this is the West, where anything goes”. Well it is up to you to decide whether you wish to throw away those few good lessons you learned over the years or succumb to the New World’s extreme campus customs.

Hey, they say “what happens here stays here!” you are at liberty to give up those respects you have for your elders,  get rid of those conservative clothing you wear for see through mini-lace dress,  as a matter of fact, you define your lifestyle.   Not-with-standing your hard work to fit in, you sweat so that you could be an ingredient in the melting pot, yet your humanity is being questioned, as a matter of fact you are constantly reminded of your otherness, the fact that you never pronounce the letter R in water, your complexion does not fit the ideal, the hair on your head is permed, wooly,  your eyes are huge, tiny,  your body is too fat, the food you eat smells terribly, you are an unusual creature. Despite all  of your efforts to be a member of this New World, you are no other than the other, no amount of editing, modifying of the self can set you free from this oppressive self you carry around, your beauty, and brain are curse, everything you do reminds  you of you. You are left with two options in dealing with this self identity crisis:  to continue fighting battles you can’t win or fight in the name of dignity, as you discern the best alternative, I urge you to calm down! relax! this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Remember when your father told you that, one day you would grow up to be a powerful smart young lady? Well, Professor John thinks other wise; he strongly suggests that your bachelor degree is enough for you to join the work force, even though you expressed your interest in doing further graduate work. You have proved in your outstanding research abilities and incredible skills in remembering those difficult Mathematical formulas. Apparently people of your sort, cursed through forefather HAM are only meant to labor for the system, besides they have been doing that for the past 500 years. If you have dark pigment, your plight is to serve, not lead…….

©CopyRight, Yoknyam Dabale

2 thoughts on “Part 2: Being an International Student

  1. Yoknyam,

    I regret that I cannot respond in a way that will do this post justice. I cannot relate to the experience of being an International in King Arthur’s Court. As a Christian I can relate to your frustrations from a values standpoint. The reaction of some of my peers to my audacity to maintain some measure of a socially conservative lifestyle and religious direction has been similar to what you mentioned your blog. I just can’t say it as eloquently as you can.

    Thank you for your Testimony,


  2. Greetings Correai,

    I appreciate your comment , yes you might not have had the right words to express your thoughts but that which you expressed is enough to charge one into an intellecual fire works. That is to say, we can all learn from each others’ narrative and make them our own, the fact that you are not an international student doesn’t necessarily mean we can’t struggle together. So thanks for sharing your thoughts on how my writing connects with you. I look forward to exchanging ideas.


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