Home at Last

This study guide will help you analyze the text “Home at Last” by Dinaw Mengestu. We will show you examples of elements in the text that will be relevant for your analysis. In these notes, we will focus on the summary, the structure of the text, and on how the writer explores the concept of home.

Presentation of the text

Title: “Home at Last”
Author: Dinaw Mengestu
Genre: Essay
Year of publication: 2008

Dinaw Mengestu (1978) is an American author who comes from Ethiopia and writes short stories and novels. He published three novels so far and multiple short stories and essays in top US Magazines. He also received various awards for his writings. “Home at Last” was published in 2008 in an anthology titled “Brooklyn Was Mine”.  


Below, you can read an excerpt from our study guide: 

The status of immigrants

Most of the essay focuses on the author’s personal journey and on him trying to create a place he belongs to in Brooklyn, where he moves after graduation. In this part of the essay, the concept of home is further explored in connection to the status of immigrants. The author first begins by associating the concept of home to making a place your own by simply moving there: “Now it was enough, I wanted to believe, to simply be, to say I was in Brooklyn and Brooklyn was home.” 

However, the fact that he wonders around Kensington in the evening or the morning is part of the author’s efforts to get used to the area, to become familiar with it. This suggests that simply moving to one place or another does not make it home: “…I had covered almost all of the neighborhood’s streets, deliberately committing their layouts and routines to memory...

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Home at Last

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