Immigrants in The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri

1206 Words5 Pages
Why are literary devices so important? Because its gives life to a story. Because it can give a single word mean so much more. Because it can create a movie inside you head. Because it keeps you at the edge of you seat while reading. Because it can make something seem way worse or way better than it actually is. Because it gives you a glimpse into the future. Because literary devices make literature a work of art. This novel, The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri, takes readers on the journey of immigrants settling in a new country. The novel starts off with Ashima Ganguli getting ready to give birth and her discontent being in a new country without her family and Indian traditions. The story mainly follows the life of Gogol Ganguli, Ashima’s son, and how he struggles to accept Indian customs, his fight to accept his name and his ongoing struggle to find his identity. Gogol changes his name to his original good name, Nikhil, and moves to New York to work. The novel reveals new situations that include the ties between generations, difference in Indian and American cultures, and the immigrant experience in entirety. The use of these symbols in this novel makes for a new perspective and ways to read between the lines, it makes the story insightful. Symbolism is used effectively in this novel and develops many different literary elements as do some other literary devices. Jhumpa Lahiri uses many literary devices in The Namesake but the most important one is symbolism because of how it develops theme and character. There are many literary devices used in the novel that develop different literary elements. The use of symbolism in the novel is evident and used effectively but some may argue that irony and foreshadowing is the most importa... ... middle of paper ... ...quote reveals his feelings after he legally changed his name and shows how he still can’t truly find his identity. This was a milestone in his life, changing his name to try and fit in but it still didn’t work out for Gogol. This develops the theme of identity, having both names to try and find his identity, to find where he belongs. It also reveals his character, his ignorance towards the namesake of his birth name. In conclusion, symbols in The Namesake reveal that symbolism is the most important literary device since it develops the theme of identity and tradition as well as Gogol’s character. Many people would feel as if other literary devices such as irony or foreshadowing is the most important literary device but without symbolism, the novel would lack meaning. It is one thing to read a story, it is another to find meaning behind the words the story tells.
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