From Alienation to Assimilation: Exploring Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Namesake
Keywords:Forced Diaspora, Voluntary Diaspora, Dual identity, Hyphenated Identity
Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel The Namesake is a kaleidoscope of the different shades of the individual relationships, the conflicts and confusions of the characters along with the cultural dilemma of the immigrants. The novel explores the diasporic conflict of the hyphenated identities of Indian-Americans. The immigrants in the novel live a confused existence as Indian-American, American-Indian and Overseas-Born-Indian. Being a foreigner is a sort of lifelong pregnancy for Ashima- a perpetual wait, a constant burden and an on-going responsibility. The novel focuses on cross-cultural conflicts, trauma and aspirations of the two generations of expatriates, Ashoke and Ashima who are not inclined towards getting Americanised, while Gogol and Sonia, the second-generation migrants face the intense pressure to be loyal to the old world and fluent to the new.
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