JUDY WOODRUFF: Now to another in our Brief But Spectacular series, where we ask people about their passions. Tonight, Jamaican-born writer Nicole Dennis-Benn. Her award-winning novel, "Here Comes the Sun," was named a best book of the year by The New York Times.
NICOLE DENNIS-BENN, Author, "Here Comes the Sun": I was raised in a working-class family in a town called Vineyard Town, Kingston, in Jamaica. Growing up working-class, there was this expectation that you would be the one to make it in your family, you know, first-generation college student. I was premed at Cornell, thinking that I was going to go to medical school. However, I wasn't passionate about that, you know? And what was really plaguing me was the fact that I wanted to be a writer. It wasn't until meeting my wife, who challenged me. She said, are you a writer or are you a researcher? Had I lived in Jamaica, I could not have been a writer. I would be -- first of all, I wouldn't be courageous to challenge the issues that I challenge in my work, you know, especially homophobia, sexualization of our young girls, race, class, socioeconomic disparities. Being here in America gave me that opportunity. I didn't come out. I was found out. My mother discovered -- well, overheard a conversation I had on the phone with another woman. And I had no idea that she was even present in the house. And so, after the conversation ended, she approached me and she said, "You know, Nicole, was that a woman on the phone?" And I said, "Yes." And she said, "Well, you know, two women don't speak like that to each other." I had spent my whole undergraduate career trying to please her and my father, being premed. So, here was that one thing that I had no control over. And so, when that happened, I was devastated. When I met my partner in 2008, she said she wanted to go to Jamaica just to see that part of me. I took her back home in 2010. And we actually spent a great time. It was at a resort, because we couldn't have stayed with my parents, given the obvious -- for obvious reasons. And it was then that all the things that I was running away from came back to me, the classism, the complexionism, the homophobia. One of the most memorable experiences there was interacting with a waiter at the resort. And, at first, he was speaking to me as like he was British, but thinking that I was a tourist. I knew the class he's from because I'm of that same class, right? So it wasn't until he found out that I was Jamaican that the mask came off. I reflected on the fact that we were socialized to be performers, to be ambassadors for our country. We were responsible for selling the fantasy. I actually wanted to show the people behind the fantasy. Who are these waiters serving us the resort? Who are the maids making our beds? Who are the hotel clerks, the JUTA bus drivers? Those are the people who are often neglected, often invisible, the working-class Jamaicans. And so I wanted their lives, especially our working-class women, to be out there. People need to be seen. I wanted to show that. I wanted to document that, right, so that, next time, the next person who comes to the island can actually see us, as well as the beauty of our country. My name is Nicole Dennis-Benn, and this is my Brief But Spectacular take on writing untold stories.
JUDY WOODRUFF: And you can watch additional Brief But Spectacular episodes on our Web site, PBS.org/NewsHour/Brief.
1.come out 出版
The book comes out this week...
2.find out 弄清
You can find out whether they are prepared to share the cost of the flowers with you
3.control over 控制
The first aim of his government would be to establish control over the republic's territory.
4.came back to 回来
They came back to view the house again
茱蒂·伍德瑞夫：现在轮到了我们的Brief But Spectacular系列，这里我们向人们问询他们的激情。今晚，做客节目的是牙买加作家妮科尔·丹尼斯·本 。她的获奖小说《太阳来了》被《纽约时报》评为年度最佳图书 。
尼科尔·丹尼斯·本，《太阳来了》作者：我出生在一个工人阶级家庭，在一个名叫葡萄园的小镇里长大，这个小镇就坐落在牙买加的金士顿。在工人阶级家庭中成长，你会被寄托上这样的期望，那就是你要成为这个家庭中，你知道，第一代大学生 。那时我在康奈尔医学院读预科，我以为我会进入医学院 。然而，这并非我的热衷所在，你知道吗？而真正困扰我的是，我想成为一名作家的事实 。直到见到我的妻子，她质问我 。她说，你是作家还是研究人员？如果我住在牙买加，我就不可能成为作家了 。我会--首先，我没有勇气去质疑我工作中遇到的一些问题，尤其是关于同性恋，我们年轻女孩的性感，种族，阶级以及社会经济差异的这些 。来到美国我有了这个机会 。我没有公开同性恋身份 。但我被发现了 。我的母亲发现——嗯，无意中听到我和另一个女人在通电话 。我甚至不知道她在屋里 。谈话结束后，她走近我，说：“你知道，妮科尔，电话里的那个人是女人吗？”我说：“是的，”她说，“嗯，你知道，两个女人不这样说话的 。”我的整个大学本科，都在取悦她和我的父亲，那时我在读医学院预科 。所以，这是一件我没法控制的事情 。所以，当这一切发生的时候，我垮掉了 。2008年我遇见了我的伴侣，她说她想去牙买加，只是为了看看我的那部分生活 。2010年我把她带回家 。事实上，我们度过了一段美好的时光 。这是在度假胜地，因为我们不可能和父母呆在一起，因为显而易见的原因 。那时，所有我逃避的东西都找了回来，阶级，种族，以及恐同症 。其中有一段经历令我十分难忘，那就是在度假村与服务员互动 。起初，他像个英国人一样和我说话，但想着我是个游客 。我知道他的阶级，因为我们一样，对吧？所以直到他发现我是牙买加人才把面具摘下来 。我反思我们都被社会逼成了演员，成了我们国家的大使 。我们有责任兜售那些幻想 。但我其实想向人们展示的是，幻想的背后 。这些在景点为我们提供服务的人是谁？帮我们铺床的女侍是谁？酒店职员，JUTA巴士司机是谁？这些人往往被忽视，往往是看不见的人，牙买加的工薪阶层 。因此，我希望让别人看到她们的生活，尤其是我们工薪阶层妇女的生活 。人们需要被看见 。我想展现这一点 。我想证明这一点，对，事实上下次来岛上的人，可以就像看到我们国家美丽景色一样，看到我们 。我的名字叫妮科尔·丹尼斯·本，这是我的Brief But Spectacular，讲述未知的故事 。
朱蒂·伍德瑞夫：关于Brief But Spectacular系列，您可在我们PBS.org/NewsHour/Brief网站上收看更多内容。