In quest of liberation: A feminist reading of short fiction of Bharati Mukherjee and Jhumpa Lahiri

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Joyita Shaw


“Man’s First Disobedience” to God’s will triggers his diasporic journey. Hence, the term “Diaspora” is not any recent phenomenon, but an increasingly unavoidable aspect of global life. In recent times it has oozed in the very core of human existence where people even of the remotest villages are not spared of its affect. The migration that began as a compulsion is now a voluntary activity for material gains, luxurious life and, higher studies. The connection of diaspora with India is quite ancient as Indians have travelled as merchants, scholars, indentured laborers from time to time and after independence, a surge in it is quite visible. Initially, women accompanied their men as an appendage and most of the diasporic writings of earlier writers tend to stereotype women’s role within the diasporic domain as a preserver of culture, inflexible to adapt. Bharati Mukherjee and Jhumpa Lahiri are two celebrated names in the diasporic field of recent history who have challenged the stereotype notion that exists within diasporic domain regarding South Asian women’s condition in the host culture. Their short fictions not only give a fresh outlook regarding women’s positive future in their adopted land but also highlights the inflexibility of men to respond to the gender neutral society of the West. This paper aims at reading four short stories, “A Father” and “Angela” by Mukherjee and “A Temporary Matter” and “This Blessed House” by Lahiri from a fresh perspective regarding their portrayal of a positive future of women in their adopted country who are breaking multiple boundaries to fit into their chosen existence, whereas Asian men lagging behind to respond to the reversal of gender role.


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How to Cite
Joyita Shaw. “In Quest of Liberation: A Feminist Reading of Short Fiction of Bharati Mukherjee and Jhumpa Lahiri”. The Creative Launcher, vol. 2, no. 3, Aug. 2017, pp. 148-53,
Research Articles


Lahiri, Jhumpa. Interpreter of Maladies: Stories of Bengal Boston and Beyond. New Delhi: HarperCollins, 1999. Print.

Mill, John Stuart. The Subjection of Women. London: Longmans, Green Reader and Dyer, 1869. Print.

Mukherjee, Bharati. Darkness. New York: Fawcett Crest, 1992. Print.