Interpreting Maladies: The Necessity of Being Rooted and Being the Root Essay

Interpreting Maladies: The Necessity of Being Rooted and Being the Root Essay

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When one arrives in a new land, one has a sense of wonder and adventure at the sight and feel of a landscape so different from what one has been accustomed to; there is also a sense of isolation and fear ; and an intense nostalgia is a buffer to which many retreat. (Uma Parameshwaran)
‘Diaspora’, derived from the Greek word diaspeirein, etymologically means “to scatter” or “to disperse”. The term is applied to the dispersion of a set of people from their place of birth to another land. Although Indians have been migrating to different parts of the world since ancient times for trade and religious propagations, the large-scale migration and settlement began with the colonial rule in India when labour emigration was enforced by the colonizers. Since then, Indians have been migrating and settling in foreign lands for various personal and political reasons. Accordingly, in the present day, the term diaspora signifies “contemporary situations that involve the experiences of migration, expatriate workers, refugees, exiles, immigrants and ethnic communities” (Pandey 20).
The experiences of these people of Indian diaspora are an amalgam of both constructive and astringent experiences.
Their experiences range from trauma to felicitations, from nostalgia to amnesia. They have assimilated with the host society as well as insulated themselves. The impact they have made as well as the influence they have received in a multicultural society has either made a good reputation and brought pride to their nation or left them feeling marginalized and given them a fractured psyche (Pandey 32).
This conflict of c...


... middle of paper ...


...er life ahead. The maladies of Jhumpa Lahiri’s characters assert this necessity of being rooted and being the root, the absence of which perturbs the individual and annihilates the warmth of a stable family.



Works Cited

Braziel, JanaEvans. Diaspora: An Introduction. USA: Blackwell Publishing, 2008. Print.
Lahiri,Jhumpa. Interpreter of Maladies. New Delhi: Harper Collins Publishers, 2008. Print.
Lal,Malashri and Paul Kumar Sukrita. Interpreting Homes in South Asian Literature.
New Delhi: Dorling Kindersley, 2007. Print.
Pandey, Abha. Indian Diasporic Literature. New Delhi: Creative Books, 2008.Print.
Parameswaran,Uma. “Writing the Diaspora: Essays on Cul[t]ure and Identity” Writers of the
Indian Diaspora .Jasbir Jain .Ed. New Delhi: Rawat Publication, 2003. Print.
Zhang, Benzi. Asian Diaspora Poetry in North America. New York: Routledge, 2008.Print.

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