When it comes to American memoirs, immigration stories have been gaining more attention, and the story of Dr. Shakuntala Rajagopal is one that presents a richly-detailed read.
Visitors to this years LibLearnX: The Library Learning Experience found their minds wondrously transported from India to Chicago in an enchanting tale that delivers exactly what it says in the title.
Chicago, IL and San Diego, CA – WEBWIRE – Saturday, February 25, 2023
As part of its mission, this years LibLearnX was fully committed to sharing new stories from many contributing authors. These included the still-untold stories of people who left their faraway homes for a new life in America. And for Dr. Shakuntala Rajagopal, her story spanned many decades of her long life, which she now retells in her memoir: TRANSPLANTED From 110 Degrees in the Shade to 10 Degrees Below Zero in the Sun.
To her, the title was the most apt way to describe those fateful 48 hours when the then 23-year-old doctor traveled with her husband to Chicago during the 1960s. However, the memoir covers more than that as it also describes her life growing up in the South Indian town of Thiruananthapuram, the rich culture of her upbringing, and a vivid, inside look at mid-20th century India.
Readers are praising the vivid, colorful details in Dr. Rajagopals memoir as she describes the roller-coaster ride of cultural transition between India and Chicago. Every page is filled with an eye-opening, firsthand account of her immigrant journey, and how she took on the challenge of assimilating American culture as her own.
From the intricacies of Hinduism and its gods, the flavors of Indian cuisine, and all the way to her heartfelt thoughts about her extended American family and all its relationships, Dr. Rajagopal doesnt hold back when it came to giving the cross-cultural inspiration that comes from immigrant stories.
TRANSPLANTED From 110 Degrees in the Shade to 10 Degrees Below Zero in the Sun is now available in Barnes and Noble and Amazon (in Kindle and hardcover editions).
TRANSPLANTED From 110 Degrees in the Shade to 10 Degrees Below Zero in the Sun
Author | Shakuntala Rajagopal
Published date | March 2019
Publisher | Outskirts Press
Genre | Memoir
Right after graduating from Trivandrum Medical College, she followed her husband of seven months to Chicago. There, she had to grow up twice. The first time, in the bosom of a warm extended family, growing up was a pleasure. In Chicago, she had to grow up all over again. In their early years, without any family, life was hard, and sometimes lonely. Despite the strange foods she had to adjust, to the strange clothes that she needed to survive the cold, and even the strangeness of the English language, (which she had hitherto believed was well versed in) she was able to mold her life and likes, and establish herself as a successful pathologist, a dedicated wife, and strong, yet kind and loving mother and grandmother. Their love and devotion to each other enabled them to make their Chicago life an adventure, and a gratifying experience.
After a long and distinguished career in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Dr. Rajagopal has retired and now lives as Matriarch to her three daughters, two sons-in-law, three grandsons, one granddaughter-in-law and to an extended family of fifty-four in Chicago land alone.