●Introduction
Points of
Departure
The effect of mass migrations has been the creation of a radically new type of human
being, people who root themselves in ideas rather than place, in memories as much
as material things; people who have been obliged to define themselves—because
they are so defined by others—by their otherness; people in whose deepest selves
strange fusions occur, unprecedented unions between what they were and where
they find themselves. The migrant suspects reality: having experienced several ways
of being, he understands their illusory nature. To see things plainly, you have to
cross a frontier.—salman rushdie, Imaginary Homelands
I left the Philippines for America to become the international beauty queen that I
was meant to be. I thought everything will be like the movies and tv shows that I
have seen when I was growing up. Well, I have had some disappointments. I still
wonder what would have happened if I were still back home. Would I still be the
exotic beauty of my childhood or the blond bombshell that I am today? I am very
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