2009 November 04 Wednesday
Obama's Half Brother Writes Novel Nairobi To Shenzhen

Barack Obama, who grew up without his father around, wrote a book Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance. Obama's half brother Mark Okoth Obama Ndesandjo has written a work of fiction, Nairobi To Shenzhen, which he says started out as an autobiography. In an interview about the book Ndesandjo relates an unromanticized view of his father.

"I remember times in my house when I would hear screams and I would hear my mother's pain." His American mother Ruth was his father's third wife.

"My skin had turned hard emotionally for so many years because of what I'd seen my mother go through," said Ndesandjo, who is slim and bears an appearance similar to the president.

Ndesandjo has lived in China since 2001.

Ndesandjo and Obama do not see the world the same way.

Ndesandjo, who had an elite education in the United States, collecting a degree from Brown University, a masters in physics from Stanford and an MBA from Emory, did not share Obama’s emotional view of his roots.

I think we'd be better off with a realist as President. But the electorate seems to choose candidates in an attempt to fulfill emotional needs.

According to Obama’s account, Mark looked him in the eye and said: “You think that somehow I’m cut off from my roots, that sort of thing. Well, you’re right.”

“At a certain point I made the decision not to think about who my real father was. He was dead to me even when he was still alive. I knew that he was a drunk and showed no concern for his wife and children. That’s enough.”

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2009 November 04 07:26 PM  Culture Compared

Mercer said at November 4, 2009 8:48 PM:

"I think we'd be better off with a realist as President"

The Obama who wrote Dreams is a realist. There are unflattering things about his relatives and descriptions of the failure of his organizing days to make much of a difference in the lives of the people he worked with. The tone of Dreams is very different from his second book and most of his political rhetoric. I don't know which is the real Obama today.

The difference between Barack and Mark is that Barack wants to be part of a group while Mark is an individualist.

sg said at November 5, 2009 5:35 AM:

Obama was wise to choose Michelle as a wife. Should he ever get drunk or violent, she could defend herself and kick his ass. His father chose more vulnerable women.

Bob Badour said at November 5, 2009 7:22 AM:
an attempt to fulfill emotional needs

Well, duh. It's the Oprah white house.

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