Monday, June 21, 1999


I'm at the First International Conference on Auto/Biography listening to a twenty-minute speech turn into a forty-minute speech in Chinese with English interpretation. It's hot and humid in the room, and the PA system hasn't squealed in a good fifteen minutes. So I guess I'm having a good time.

I'm meeting a lot of interesting people, scholars from China, America, Canada, South Africa, Germany, France, Australia, the U.K., Israel and India. I feel like such an imposter, though really not any more here at an academic conference than during my daily life. In my space, my personal zone even, I am always the Other, the outsider: gringo, Gentile, gaijin--the person at odds with his environment as well as with himself.

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