Summary Of Bharati Muukhererjee's The Management Of Grief

991 Words2 Pages

There are many different ways to grieve over the death of loved ones. The way someone grieves is different depending on national origin, but also differs from person to person. These differences are shown in Bharati Mukherjee’s short story “The Management of Grief,” and the film The Namesake. The plane crash of Air India Flight 82 killed many Indian Canadians leaving their loved ones to grieve. Of those left behind Shalia Bhave exemplifies people having different ways of grieving. She has her own way of mourning that is different from Canadians, but does not strictly follow traditional Hindu practices either. Shalia acts cool and unaffected when she mourns differing from most members of her community, who show their emotions to the public. Shalia’s grieving method causes tension between her and the community. This tension is portrayed in Shalia’s conversation with Judith Templeton, a Canadian social worker dealing with relatives of the deceased. Shalia states, “By the standards of the people you call hysterical, I am behaving very oddly and very badly, Miss Templeton” Dr. Ranganathan a widower from Montreal had a positive outlook on the situation and gave Shalia hope. “With some good luck,” Dr.Ranganathan suggests to me, “a good swimmer could make it safely to some island”(Mukherjee 920). Dr. Ranganathan encourages Shalia to throw roses in the water for her loved ones, but she instead wants to throw objects in the water for her sons on the island and a love note for her husband. These items show her hope that her sons are alive and regret that she never told her husband she loved him due to her traditional Indian upbringing. Dr. Ranganathan also identifies photos of deceased children thought to be Shalia’s sons bringing comfort and relief to her. Shalia also mentions how the Irish are more compassionate than Canadians symbolizing how culture influences

Open Document