Jhumpa Lahiri: Writing About The Struggles Immigrants Face

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Moving to a new town can be hard, adjusting to a new house and meeting new people. Moving to a new country, however, can be far more difficult. Not only are there new people to meet, immigrants must adjust to an entirely different culture and language. Many find it hard to assimulate into the new culture, while still maintaining they customs and traditions of their old country. One author who writes about immigrants' struggles is Jhumpa Lahiri. She heard stories first hand of the struggle to adjust from her parents, immigrants from India. Some of her short stories are based on her parents' experiences. In the stories "This Blessed House," "The Third and Final Continent," and "Mrs. Sen's," Lahiri shows how the struggle of immigrants to adjust to an unfamiliar culture can lead to misunderstandings and identity crises. "This Blessed House" is the story of a newly married couple, both second generation Americans. Although both Twinkle and Sanjeev are educated and Westernized, their marriage was arranged in an Indian manner. Their parents, old friends, had arranged the initial meeting. They had a two month long distance relationship before they were married, in India at their parents' insistence (Lahiri, "Blessed," 142). Before their wedding, Sanjeev purchases a house for them in Connecticut. Throughout the house is a "sizeable collection of Christian paraphernalia" (Lahiri, "Blessed," 137). There is a paint - by - number picture of the three wise men, a Jesus trivet, a Nativity scene snow globe, and switch plates in the bedrooms with biblical scenes on them. "Twinkle is delighted by the array of Christian artifacts she finds in the couple's new home, not because she is particularly religious, but because they amuse her" (Brians).... ... middle of paper ... ...2010. . Karim, Rezaul. “Jhumpa Lahiri.” South Asian Writers in English. N.p.: n.p., 2006. N. pag. Literature Resource Center. Web. 26 Feb. 2010. . Lahiri, Jhumpa. “Mrs. Sen’s.” Interpreter of Maladies. Boston: Houghton, 1999. 111-135. Print. - - -. “The Third and Final Continent.” Interpreter of Maladies. Boston: Houghton, 1999. 173-198. Print. - - -. “This Blessed House.” Interpreter of Maladies. Boston: Houghton, 1999. 135-157. Print. Mitra, Madhuparna. “Lahiri’s Mrs. Sen’s.” The Explicator Spring 2006: 185. Literature Resource Center. Web. 2 Mar. 2010. . Reisman, Rosemary M. Canfield. “The Third and Final Continent.” Masterplots II: Short Story Series, Revised Edition. N.p.: Salem Press, Inc, 2004. N. pag. Literary Reference Center. Web. 22 Feb. 2010. .

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