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A Temporary Matter

english project
by

Kiera O'Halla

on 10 June 2013

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Transcript of A Temporary Matter

by Daphne Samuel, Rishita Yeduri, Sukhmani Singh, and Kiera O'Halla The power outages, the couple’s “spark” of love for each other, and their inability to have children are only temporary. Each one gets worse and worse, until Shoba reveals that she's been looking to move out, and Shukumar destroys the mystery, the baby's gender, that Shoba used to comfort herself over the baby's death. The Importance of Communication Meaning of Title After the baby’s death, Shoba and Shukumar stop talking to their friends and each other. This causes a rift to come between them and they start to mistrust each other The author uses this to show Shukumar’s pain over the glass wall that grew between him and Shoba. With this comes characterization of both Shoba and Shukumar. a three bedroom house Darkness The darkness serves as a metaphor for the bond between Shoba and Shukumar. They were shooting in the dark for a chance at a relationship again, but came up empty each time until the darkness became literal, which was when they finally tried to really fix the holes in their marriage by trying to build trust back up again. setting The Weather One of the days, the weather is unseasonably warm, showing that the ice between Shoba and Shukumar is thawing. In Baltimore, MD Characters' Relationships The Baby The baby is a symbol of the relationship between Shoba and Sukumar. Their relationship grows as their baby does, but unfortunately it dies with him too. In the past, there was a plethora of food, similar to the love of the couple. Shoba used to make the food and make sure she was prepared. Once their baby dies, they are slowly running out of the food that had been stored. Food However, Sukumar makes no moves to make sure there would be more, despite the fact that he is doing most of the cooking off of Shoba's recipes. This is similar to the fact that Sukumar never tries to get Shoba home again or reignite the love that was once there. Grief can cause the closest relationships to fade. Deeper Meaning In Boston, MA The author uses the small
changes in both Shoba and
Shukumar to show their pain
and conflict Plot Summary Sukhmani ---dw guys..I got this..I'll do a basic summary :)

Daphne: oops... i didn't see this before i did one... sorry :( Summary:
A Temporary Matter is a short story about a grieving couple over the loss of their stillborn child. Through the third person perspective of Shukumar, it explains how the relationship between the two has slowly broken down, ending in an inferred separation. Diaspora:
Shoba's mom - shrine, retains indian customs
Rice Ceremony
Language: no indication that the couple still speaks
Shukumar hasn't been to India in many years but Shoba did
Talk about power failures in India - origin of the game The deterioration of Shoba and Shukumar's relationship is explained in the seemingly unimportant things, such as the fact that Shukumar forgot to brush his teeth, or the color of the cab that he took after leaving Shoba before she went into labor. Each confession they make is about how they were dishonest, or disappointed the other in some way. This shows how much was missed while they were grieving and avoiding each other. Shoba's mother keeps her religious traditions, despite her home and job in the U.S, however, it is inferred that Shoba does not, despite her mother's influence DIALOGUE Lahiri uses dialogue sparingly, drawing attention to it and thus making it more important and also showing readers how Shoba and Shukumar don't really converse. This indicates how far apart they've grown. Despite temporary success, some problems just can't be fixed. Shukumar has lost almost all connection to India, and hasn't been there in many years, despite the fact that his mother still lives there. Shoba and Shukumar also reminisce about the frequent power outages in India, and it leads to their confessions "A Temporary Matter" surrounds the failing marriage of an Indian couple, Shoba and Shukumar, after their child was stillborn. Each night, during a scheduled power outage from 8-9pm, they share secrets that they hadn't told anyone before, creating hope that they could fix their marriage. “Their baby had never cried, Shukumar considered. Their baby would never have a rice ceremony, even
though Shoba had already made the guest list, ... and decided to feed the child its first taste of solid food, at six months if it was a boy, seven if it was a girl.”
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