Once in a blue moon, we watch something and though it may be fictional, it touches us so profoundly. The other day, as I was searching through Netflix looking for something to watch, I came across Hasan Minaj: Homecoming King. As I started to watch it, I realized how much in common I had with the stand up comedian. I cannot recommend it enough. He touches on the immigrant narrative, growing up with parents who had immigrated to North America in search of a better life and the nuances that often go misunderstood between generations.
Minhaj also touched on something profound and close to my heart, Islamophobia. He spoke of his experience with it and how it shaped his adolescence and adult life. I don’t want to give away too much because he is a brilliant comic and entertainer and it’s a great piece of entertainment but he referenced a situation with his dad explaining the fundamental difference between first and second generation immigrants. He also spoke of certain truths that his dad had accepted and used to govern his life and certain truths that Mihaj refused to accept and vowed to change. He dubbed it the Audacity of Equality. That part alone is worth the watch. I couldn’t think of a better way to articulate it.
As the child of parents who immigrated to Canada almost 43 years ago, I grew up witnessing similar realities. While my parents taught me to spread my wings, shoot for the stars and break glass ceilings, I watched as they navigated a new land with foreign languages and unfamiliar customs. As children often do, I quietly watched the nuances and how they reacted and allowed their own experiences to frame my own guidelines. Sometimes fear led the decision making progress, sometimes defiance.
I’m thankful I just watched Hasan Minaj Homecoming King and I am thankful for the lessons that I learnt from it.
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DISCLOSURE: Please note that I am a member of the Netflix Stream Team and receive certain perks as part of my membership. All opinions are 100% my own.