Behind The Namesake

942 Words2 Pages

Love is an emotional rollercoaster ride, a ride full of high and lows, affection and confusion, devotion and despair. Love can be called many things, but how does one know that they are truly in love? Love is a universal human experience shaped by unique cultural and personal circumstance. You must understand yourself first to understand another human being. In the Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri, the protagonist Gogol, a first-generation Bengali-American is confused between his parent’s expression of love and his” American” life. He struggles to find himself, while rejecting his own cultural heritage, and uses love to find himself. Throughout his life, he will discover his heritage slowly and what it means to love and to be loved. Throughout Gogol’s upbringing, his first perception of love was of his parents. In an ideal Bengali relationship, affection between …show more content…

His confusion stems from the fact that his name is neither Bengali or American but Russian. Named after Nikhil Gogol a Russian author, he will soon find himself taking the first name of the author. The name Nikhil gave him a temporary sense of identity in which is used to start an American relationship. The relationship with Ruth was a relationship based on their vast difference of being a “Yankee” American in contracts to him being a first-generation Bengali-American. However, he does identify as being a Bengali but a typical “suburban” American. The love he has with Ruth was a taste of what an American relationship would look like. Her parents are divorces and are hippies who accepts Nikhil for who he is. Compared to his own family who questions his love with her. The falling of the relationships is when Ruth left for Oxford and when she comes back Gogol tries to rekindle the fire between them but realizes that there was nothing to rekindle. Their love was just a fling, and a way to express his love for American

Open Document