The British Library

Natasha’s Story

I was born in Lebanon in 1973 to an Indian father and a Lebanese Armenian mother. She was orthodox Christian and he was Muslim. They moved to Algeria where my dad taught in the university. Then we went to live in Nigeria for 4 years where my dad taught pharmacology I was 11 when we finally moved permanently to the Uk. I spent a lot of my childhood feeling like an outsider. A white girl in a Black Country and then a very dark skinned mixed race girl in a white country I never knew what to say when people asked me where I came from. My parents speak five languages each and I only spoke English i couldn’t even tell you today what my mother tongue should be but I do wish I could speak Armenian and connnect with my bigger family abroad. I wish I could speak urdu to connect with my father’s family but having said all that I feel fortunate that if I only have one language it is English. I feel fortunate to grow up here I just wish I had deeper roots to my origins.

-Natasha, Greater London

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