If you are trying to develop your Cultural Intelligence (CQ) then you likely have a deep interest in other people. You are engaging with people who are not like you, and are attempting to understand why they are not like you; aiming to understand their Core and their Flex, as well as your own.
But which novels can help you on your way? Which novels contain such richly drawn characters - from an array of backgrounds - that it is hard not to explore and mediate other culture's ways of thinking?
We have created a reading list of books we think can help you improve your Cultural Intelligence.
What have we missed? Let us know in comments!
Dam-Burst of Dreams
Dam-Burst of Dreams is a collection of stories and poems by Christopher Nolan, who has never been able to speak and has limited control of his movements. His talent was only relealised when he was introduced to a muscular relaxant drug which has given him sufficient control to compose, first with the aid of an electric typewriter and now with a processor, manipulated by a device attached to his head.
Cloudstreet is one of the most renowned pieces of Australian literature of all time. Published in 1991 and written by Tim Winton, it tells the story of two working class Australian families in Perth, Western Australia. With much of the novel focusing on family and identity, the novel presents much food for thought on how, why and where we develop our Core.
In the Country of Men
Hisham Matar's debut novel chronicles the life of Suleiman, a nine year old boy living in Tripoli, Libya. Set in a time when Libya was ruled by Gaddafi, much of the novel deals with humanity in the face of oppression. The book is a must read for anyone wanting to explore life in Libya before the Arab Spring.
Very much a novel about globalisation and the positives and negatives that entails, Americanah tells the story of a Nigerian woman who travels to America to study. Written by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the novel was selected as one of the 10 Best Books of 2013 by the editors of the New York Times Book Review.
To Kill a Mockingbird
More than 50 years on, Harper Lee's novel about racism in the American Deep South still speaks as powerfully as any novel written since. To Kill a Mockingbird follows the Finch family during 3 years of the Great Depression in the 1930s and explores prejudice through the eyes of children who are only just becoming old enough to understand its implications.
ALSO READ: 10 books that will improve your Cultural Intelligence (Part 1)
Cultural Intelligence (CQ) is the ability to cross divides and thrive in multiple cultures. Find out more about Cultural Intelligence