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interpreters of maladies

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Nikki Cole

on 24 January 2013

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Transcript of interpreters of maladies

Interpreter of Maladies By Jhumpa Lahiri Sexy A Temporary Matter Plot Overview Connections to America Analysis Connection to American
Culture What It's About Indian Life Types of Story themes American VS Indian Culture Plot Interpreter of Maladies -Set in India itself, and concern only Indians in India: ‘The
Treatment of Bibi Haldar’ and ‘A Real Durwan’
-Set in India itself, and concerns an Indian who comes into contact with American Indians 'An Interpreter of Maladies'
-Set in America itself, concerns first-generation Indians who are inevitably alienated from American culture because they have left the land in which they
were born and raised Story about a Indian tour guide (Mr. Kapasi) in India who gives a tour to an American Indian family. The family seems a little strange to him because the two parents act as though they are older siblings to their children. Mr. and Mrs. Das barely seem interested in the Indian culture or each other. Mr. Kapasi explains that he is an interpreter for people who speak Gujarati for a doctor. Mrs. Das becomes suddenly interested in him sexually because she thinks his profession is "romantic." When she starts to trust him, she tells him how she once had an affair and one of her sons does not belong to Mr. Das. She expects sympathy from Kapasi, because he is an "Interpreter of Maladies." In the end, Bobby (the bastard son) gets attacked by a dozen monkeys and Mr. Kapasi is the one to save him. -Americans today bare a lot of skin with their clothing styles (Mrs. Das), where in Indian culture women are very conservative with the clothing they choose to wear
-According to Jhumpa Lahiri it is extremely difficult to be an Indian- American because you feel as though you don't fit in with either heritages
-Stereotypes cause many white Americans to discriminate against Indians, Jhumpa exemplifies this struggle in many of her short stories and novels
-In both Indian and American culture, marriages and families face the same problems. (This is shown in "An Interpreter of Maladies") -everyone knows how to brush their teeth with
their finger
-all Indians take naps
-Goddess Kali
-Hindu Goddess
-Goddess of time and change
-henna tatoo -Miranda meets Dev, an older, married, Indian man.
-They have a new and exciting relationship, but
don't know each other well.
-Subplot of Laxmi, Miranda's coworker, has a cousin
whose husband left her for a younger English girl.
-Laxmi's cousin's son, Rohan, sheds insight about
how his mother feels about being cheated on. A Temporary Matter is told by the point of view of Shukumar, the husband of Shoba. Shoba's pregnancy has created problems in their relationship and Shukumar and Shoba have become distant from the entire world, including each other. Like most of Lahiri's stories, food also plays a key role in A Temporary Matter. Before the relationship began to head downhill, food was plentiful and Shoba cooked often. Eventually the house begins to fall apart and Shukumar doesn't make any attempts to fix the things that are being neglected, and instead blames Shoba. One day, they learn that their power will be out for one hour each night, for five nights. The couple spends these hours in darkness; sharing secrets and talking about things that they have never discussed. What is shared reveals many flaws in their relationship, fixing the problems that they had. Lahiri, Jhumpa. A Temporary Matter. Interpreter of Maladies. N.p.: Houghington Mifflin, n.d. N. pag. The New York Times Company, 1999. Web. 23 Jan. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/books/first/l/lahiri-maladies.html>. In the short story, A Temporary Matter, Shoba and Shukumar face problems in their relationship. The secrets they keep from each other and the emotions they feel are the same problems that many American couples face. The reader gets the vibe that the couple is very much like any other American couple even though they are from India. This proves in a way that relationships, unlike other parts of life, cross over to many different countries. No matter where one is from, he or she will most likely still face the same troubles when it comes to a relationship. The power outage allows the couple to have the intimacy that they have not experienced since the death of their son who died during pregnancy. One of the most prevalent themes is the importance of communication. The death of their son brought silence and each charactor became a different person. The silence destroys their relationship because they no longer bond over experiences. Also the last secrets they share with each other are the most painful ones (Shobas intentions to move out and Shukumar's revelation of the gender of their dead child). The secrecy leads to a lack of trust that ruins the marriage. 9 Short Stories A Temporary Matter
When Mr. Pirzada Came to Dine
Interpreter of Maladies
A Real Durwan
Sexy
Mrs. Sen's
This Blessed House
The Treatment of Bibi Haldar
The Third and Final Continent The title of the book comes from a story within
published in 1999
Indian and American-Indian culture
the stories are combined to create a "short story cycle"
the idea of care and neglect in all of the stories
immigrant experience and the divide between cultures
Lahiri’s stories revolve around people who are either Indian in India, Indian in the United States or Americans of Indian descent. Born Nilanjana Sudeshna to Bengali Indian immigrants in London
Moved to the USA when she was three years old
There went by the name Jhumpa Lahiri
Her family often visited relatives in Calcutta (now Kolkata)
Received her B.A. in English literature
Lahiri's early short stories faced rejection from publishers "for years"
Lahiri's writing is characterized by her "plain" language and her characters
frequently draws upon her own experiences as well as those of her parents, friends, acquaintances, and others in the Bengali communities with which she is familiar -No matter where you are from in the world, having
an affair is still wrong.
-Miranda has a name in Indian roots, Mira, which is Dev's
Aunt's name.
-Shows how sometimes the simplist definition is the best. "Loving someone you don't know" What does it mean? -Communication breaks down repeatedly in “Interpreter of Maladies,” often with hurtful consequences. Mr. Kapasi, who is the interpreter of maladies, as Mrs. Das names him, has lost his ability to communicate with his wife, forcing him to drink his tea in silence at night and leading to a loveless marriage.
-Mr. Kapasi sees many details about Mrs. Das, such as her bare legs and Americanized shirt and bag
-In the title story, ‘Interpreter of Maladies’ (pp.43–69), Mr Kapasi is a character who signifies the deep divide between the culture of American-born Indians and that of Indians living in India. As the Das family’s tourist guide, he is constantly bemused by the fact that these people ‘looked Indian but dressed as foreigners did’ (pp.43–4). Ignorance? Themes -Mr Das stops to take a photo ‘of a barefoot man, his head wrapped in a dirty turban’ (p.49) – treating him as if he is there merely to add local colour to his travels, rather than as a human being in his own right.
-Mrs Das is completely indifferent to the whole tourist experience, only becoming interested when Mr Kapasi begins to tell her about his other line of work.
-He begins to see that human behavior is the same in all cultures. Mr and Mrs Das are no more suited to each other than he and his wife are. He recognizes the signs of a dysfunctional marriage – ‘the bickering, the indifference, the protracted silences (p.53)' One more picture...because she is GORGEOUS Besides communication, food also plays an important role in the story. Food is an important part of Indian culture and when the relationship was happy, trips to the market were exciting for Shukumar. Shoba would make lavish meals and friends would always be welcome to their home. After the death of their son, food as well as friends became scarce, symbolizing the downfall of the marriage. Bibliography Lahiri, Jhumpa. A Temporary Matter. Interpreter of Maladies. N.p.: Houghington Mifflin, n.d. N. pag. The New York Times Company, 1999. Web. 23 Jan. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/books/first/l/lahiri-maladies.html>. Wikipedia. "Jhumpa Lahiri." Wikipedia. Wikipedia, 2012. Web. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jhumpa_Lahiri>.
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