Book Club chronicles – Talks about the ‘Otherness’ at Wang Thai

I may not have mentioned this before (or maybe I have) but the RASTA book club/supper club/ hang-out-together-and-stuff-ourselves-silly club is originally made up of a group of five aah-mazing ladies (myself included). Book club is however open to anyone that meets our so-called standards (i.e. can read and willing to pay ridiculous amount of money for food), so we have included two equally amazing ladies in the group. One of which is guest post blogger, Rukayat , also known as the voice of all Nigerians 🙂

Yes, I like to stereotype people.
And how fitting it was that we have the “voice of all Nigerians” as a member of our book club when we are reading “Half of a Yellow Sun” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. This was the second time I read the book. And it was as good as the first time. Chimamanda has managed to put a more human face on the horrors of the Biafra War and any other war generally. She has the wonderful gift of constantly reminding her readers about the bigger picture as told by each of her characters. I honestly fall in love with her writing each time I read her books.
And so I came prepared to impress everyone with my analysis of the book – you know, using my well prepared paragraph as typed out above :). Little did I know that book club leader of the night is an economist by day but a social science professor by night. See exhibit A below:

Some discussion points for tomorrow’s book club shindig:

1) The purpose of oscillating between the early and late 1960s

2) The choice of the three characters through which story is narrated (Ugwu, Olanna and Richard)

3) The perceptions of the three main classes of people living in Nigeria of one another and themselves (former British colonists, educated middle-class black Nigerians and lower-class Nigerians)

4) The ways in which the war made Nigerians both unequal and equal

5) How Adichi captures the horror of war so well (eg. physical, psychological, emotional)

6) The role of collective trauma in creating and/or cementing identity and the ‘otherness’ of this process

(excuse pretentious social science speak)


The Otherness?!?

The otherness

The look on my face when I read these questions

WTF is the otherness”???

Yikes, I need to get new friends that aren’t such over-achievers.
Needless to say, we were all saved from admitting that we k now nothing about the otherness” when Nigerian Voice of the night gave us her perspective on the Biafra War, the #BringBackOurGirls campaign and all other issues affecting young Nigerians. It was by far the most productive and most “intellectual” book club night by far. We actually talked about the book and issues raised in the book for at least an hour.

A WHOLE HOUR!!! Hehehe, our “book club” may finally be a book club after all – and it only took reading Chimamanda to get us talking about the book.

However, worry not dear reader, our priorities are still in place – we did not forget to eat 🙂 and get wedding gossip from our two newly engaged ladies. Hehe, old habits won’t go away. Wang Thai is surprisingly affordable (not extremely cheap but not as expensive as other places in Sandton) with really good food.

Wang Thai_2


Wang Thai

Was it the best Thai food I’ve eaten? Not really – I still prefer Sai Thai in Cyrildene.




3 thoughts on “Book Club chronicles – Talks about the ‘Otherness’ at Wang Thai

  1. I totally knew what otherness was. I just expected to keep rolling my eyes at people that actually use it in a conversation like it’s normal. IT IS NOT! On another note, thank goodness I read this after lunch because I suddenly remembered all the nice stuff we had that night, YUM!

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