Writing Out of Limbo: International Childhoods, Global Nomads and Third Culture Kids
Crossing borders and boundaries, countries and cultures, they are the children of the military, diplomatic corps, international business, education and missions communities. They are called Third Culture Kids or Global Nomads, and the many benefits of their lifestyle – expanded worldview, multiplicity of languages, tolerance for difference – are often mitigated by recurring losses – of relationships, of stability, of permanent roots. They are part of an accelerating demographic that is only recently coming into visibility.
In this groundbreaking collection, writers from around the world address issues of language acquisition and identity formation, childhood mobility and adaptation, memory and grief, and the artist’s struggle to articulate the experience of growing up global. And, woven like a thread through the entire collection, runs the individual’s search for belonging and a place called “home.”
This book provides a major leap in understanding what it’s like to grow up among worlds. It is invaluable reading for the new global age.
Gene H. Bell-Villada, born in Haiti of US parents, was raised in Puerto Rico, Cuba and Venezuela. A professor of Romance Languages at Williams College (Massachusetts), he is the author or editor of ten books, including a TCK memoir, Overseas American: Growing Up Gringo in the Tropics (2005).
Nina Sichel is co-editor, with Faith Eidse, of Unrooted Childhoods: Memoirs of Growing Up Global (2004), the first collection of memoirs by Third Culture Kids and Global Nomads. Raised among expats in Venezuela, she relocated many times as an adult, and currently leads memoir and guided writing workshops near Washington, DC.
"This book will become a bible to anyone who truly wants to look inside the mind of the Third Culture Kid (TCK), the Military Brat, or the Missionary Kid. [...] Anyone writing about TCK issues needs this book; it’s an invaluable reference."
- Jo Parfitt, 'Global Living Magazine', 3 (October/November 2012), p. 56.
"Personal and heartfelt, the pieces shed light on the bittersweetness of an international childhood."
- The Foriegn Service Journal (November 2012) p. 47.
"This terrific and substantial volume is a vital step in clarifying the experiences, gifts, and struggles of those who grew up around the world, or with those who grew up elsewhere. I can’t wait to teach with it."
- Wendy Laura Belcher, PhD, Professor of Literature, Princeton University.
"Well-grounded in classical perspectives and new visions of what it means to live in an intercultural world, the book offers a wonderful array of memoir, research, interviews, theory and even poetry. There’s something for everyone here!"
- Anne P. Copeland, PhD, Director, The Interchange Institute.
"The selections here, varied as they are, share the quiet, profound, and rich experiences of people writing on the most innocent years, transcendent of cultural boundaries. Reading this book is a travel across the globe with an impressive group of worldly citizens."
- Morten Ender, PhD, Professor of Sociology, United States Military Academy at West Point.
"I recommend this book to all parents who are creating TCKs; to teachers and professors of TCKs; for general reading and understanding of the making of a citizen of the world; and, finally, to TCKs themselves, who will see that their experiences are shared with many others."
- Linda A. Garvelink, President, Foreign Service Youth Foundation.
"This book is an essential contribution to the discussion of migration and the art of finding a home between borders. In vivid prose, the authors reveal the value of cultural negotiation and the complexity of identities formed on the margins."
- Neela Vaswani, PhD, Author of You Have Given Me a Country.
Gene H. Bell-Villada
Bruce La Brack
Anna Maria Moore
Elaine Neil Orr
Ruth Van Reken
Buy This Book