We think of immigration in simplistic terms but really immigration sometimes is hard to get your mind around. How do you describe someone waking up in the morning in a house that has no electricity, no running water, they don’t have any television, they only speak one language, the only people they’ve ever met are Dominicans, and by that evening being in the center of New York city. Having cable, lights, electricity, Chinese guy upstairs, right next door a Korean person, downstairs somebody from Uruguay, folks on the television talking about all sorts of crazy stuff. I mean sure, realism might try to approach that. But in my mind when I was a kid, when I read about time travel, time travel felt like a much more honest description to me of what that meant. Being transported from Santo Domingo 74’ to New York and New Jersey in 74’. That was far more honest to the experience than anything I could have written realistically. And for a young mind [at the age of 6] it’s an extraordinary leap. And I think science fiction, I think fantasy.. the genres do a wonderful job of describing many parts of our society that realism doesn’t do a great job of describing.
Junot Diaz - Moyers & Company Show 151: Rewriting the Story of America (via kenobi-wan-obi)