Ethical Aspect Of Indian Immigrants In The Namesake By Jhumpa Lahiri

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The novel aims at projecting the ethical aspect of Indian immigrants in Jhumpa Lahiri’s debut novel The “Namesake”. In the nineteenth century the immigrants were migrating to the west as indentured labourers but now they migrate for the prospect of career building and profit making. But in both the cases culture plays a very important role in their life. In their socio-political liminality and marginal statues, the immigrants enjoy life in economic subjugation but have an emotional emancipation in their contra acculturation. In the super structure of America’s multicultural society they have cross-cultural experiences. This helps them to reconcile between their inherited and acquired selves for consolation. The immigrant Indians in a dilemma romanticise the dazzles of American civilization and retain their faith in tradition, custom, culture, history, myth, legend and folklore for emotional satisfaction. In the liberal and secular social environment of America, they are occupied in economic professionalism being pre-occupied with the dilemma of cultural past they familiarize their consciousness in the cultural practices. In cross-cultural experiences they discover their marginality in a fix and hybridity in flux. As an “imagined community” they bridge the polarities through the cultural ethics and try their best not to be contaminated by the materialistic temptations. Their identity is restrained as ‘luminal personae’ and ‘transitional being’ and it becomes culturally impregnable in the thought of ‘home’ and ‘abroad’. They realize that the cultural available of India cannot be substituted with the material plenitude of America. The socio-cultural sensibility of the immigrants cannot be modified in American milieu since the inherit... ... middle of paper ... ...self-willed exile for America’s provoking economy does not create amnesia for the cultural of the motherland. In habit and practice, they enculturate their ancestral culture in appropriation and orientation. In centrifugal status they remain centripetal in their ethical consciousness and culture practice. In valorization of their native culture and glorification of their motherland, they are enculturate themselves for satisfaction and emotional emancipation. They organize ceremonies, family occasions like birth and death days, marriage and pujas in Hindu tradition and teach him about Hindu God- She teaches him to memorize a four lines children’s poem by Tagore, and the names of deities adorning the ten- hundred goddess Durga during puja: Saraswati with her swan and Kartik with his peacock to her left, Laxmi with her owl Ganesh with his mouse to her right. Pg 54

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