The Dialogue Society Book Group – Meeting 16: Water Reflects the Bamboo’s Shadow: The Untold History of Two Families: the Dungans, the Cina Babas, the Old Man and Women of the Steppes, by Omer Shener

Open to Everyone
Free to Attend

AEF 49 Whitehall, LONDON, SW1A 2BX


Water Reflects the Bamboo’s Shadow tells the story of Murat, the child of a British Turkish family, who sets on a mission to uncover the secrets of his family’s past, that takes him to the village of his grandparents. While Murat travels across borders and continents through his trips and the Old Man’s stories, we get to learn about his father’s troubled relationship with his relatives and his immediate family. While all of this is happening, Water Reflects the Bamboo’s Shadow delves into the questions of identity, belonging, cultural memory, nationalism, war crimes and hybridity.

About the Dialogue Society Book Group

The Dialogue Society Book Group explores the capacity of books to provide windows into different cultural and intercultural worlds. We will be choosing a series of quality novels to read and then to discuss together at relaxed, sociable gatherings at the Dialogue Society. Participants are welcome to suggest books for future sessions.

Participants will need to find a copy of the book chosen for each meeting and will need to read it prior to the meeting. Books will generally be available from local libraries.

Over refreshments we will have a conversation about the book and our responses to it. Discussion may cover:

  • the quality of the storytelling
  • the authenticity and accuracy with which a historical/cultural situation is portrayed
  • our personal responses to it

You do not need to be an expert on literature or anything else to join in. The group should be enjoyable for anyone who enjoys a good book and likes discovering new ones.