ABOUT A Map of Myself
In a 60-minute performance that combines acting, classic storytelling in the tradition of Spalding Gray, and dynamic spoken-word poetry, Sara recounts her journey from war-torn Damascus, Syria to welcoming Columbus, Ohio. The daughter of Syrian-born parents and the granddaughter of Palestinian-born grandparents, Sara early on grew up with the fascination of “belonging.” In Syria, Sara’s family lived in an area designated for descendants of Palestinian refugees. Although Sara and her parents were born and spent their entire lives in Syria, they were never given citizenship in either Syria or Palestine. Her confusion over her homeland and the immigration she experienced to escape the Syrian civil war unleashed her creativity at a young age. In her poetry and her prose, Sara addresses issues of identity, diaspora, politics, war, and what it means to find “home.”
In 2013, Sara was the new kid at school in Columbus, Ohio—a 13-year-old girl who spoke no English. She learned the language by translating every word of her textbooks, most notably The Odyssey. Within months, she was writing poetry in English and performing on stages across Columbus, including headlining a “Six In the City” show at Shadowbox and giving a talk at TEDxColumbus.
A Map of Myself is Sara’s way of exploring the outer world of displacement and her inner reflections on identity, as she offers a humane understanding of the immigrant experience. Ultimately, in A Map of Myself, Sara asks the most singular and yet universal of questions of us all: How does where we come from shape who we are? And what does it mean to find “home”?