the foreigner club

“The Lonely Planet guide quotes the idea that some countries have a ‘mission’ attitude towards foreigners, and some have a ‘club’ attitude. ‘Mission’ countries define foreignness by behavior — act like a native, and as far as other natives are concerned, you eventually have as much right to be there as they do. ‘Club’ countries define foreignness by your lineage or passport — it will never matter what you do, how well you learn the language, how many soccer teams or famous department stores you buy — you are foreign and always will be. Japan is a classic club society. Living here, I kiss my sense of social belonging goodbye.”

David Mitchell, “Japan and my Writing
China is also definitely a “club” experience.

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