As we wake each morning, shave, style our hair, fasten our ties, and zip up our skirts, consciously or not, we subscribe to the dominant cultural norms that pervade society. Rarely does someone question these practices or consider their purpose, they simply are. Societies demand our conformity and those who fail to meet these capricious mandates struggle to not only find an identity, but also the solace associated with community. Although, utilizing the motif of isolation in This Blessed House, Jhumpa Lahiri forces her audience to reconcile not only the identity crises that individuals suffer because of conformity, but also the autonomy that those who resist the need to conform discover. An examination of the two main characters from Lahiri’s story, This Blessed House, illustrates this aforementioned tension and emphasizes the discontent associated with isolation. Sanjeev, the disgruntled husband of the story, ironically isolates himself from American society by an unrelenting loyalty to his native Indian culture. As a result, his happiness is curbed due to an unwillingness to conform to western society. In fact, Sanjeev’s marriage represents a hollow attempt to assuage the contrived need for companionship forged within his culture. Sanjeev’s proclivity to rationalize his marriage by acknowledging Twinkle’s superior education and “suitably high caste” only reinforces this tragic reality (149). Furthermore, Sanjeev’s anticipation of the dinner party amplifies not only his isolation but also troubled identity. This passage denotes a dutiful obligation, grounded in his native culture, to exhibit his material success to members of a foreign culture imposing entirely different standards. Certainly, it is ironic that Sanjeev arduously prepares to impress people that he “only associates with being alone” (145). His inhibition to release himself from the expectations of Indian culture coupled with his reluctance to conform to western society stands in opposition to Twinkles propensity to find the “hidden wonders he [cannot] anticipate, or see” (142). Sanjeev’s self-imposed isolation from society is further manifested in his recollections of his college years. His old textbooks “remind him of a time in his life he recalled with fondness, when he would walk each evening across the Mass. Avenue bridge to order Mughlai chicken…from his favorite Indian restaurant…and return to his dorm to write out…problem sets (138).” The prevalence of Indian culture and absence of American culture throughout this memory are significant. Sanjeev’s love for Indian food further reveals his stringent loyalty to Indian culture and an unwillingness to eat, or experience, the conventions of American culture. This is reinforced throughout the narrative as he only consumes Indian food, showing a complete aversion to American customs. Additionally, Sanjeev returned to his apartment each night not to socialize with American roommates, but to further isolate himself from foreign culture via homework. This fondness of isolation opposes the experience of Twinkle, a Stanford graduate. While Sanjeev remained impervious to American influence during her college career, Twinkle exits college personifying American culture with her “suede three-inch leopard-print pumps and chenille sweater (141).” Sanjeev’s perspective of his marriage and the circumstances leading toward it underscore his inability to assimilate into American society and escape the demands of Indian culture. “He thought of a flicker of regret of the snapshots…of prospective brides who could sing and sew and season lentils without consulting cookbook (146).” Sanjeev not only longs for this contrived bride, but this blueprint is a stark contrast to Twinkle, who cannot perform any of these aforementioned duties. Furthermore, these ideals have been imposed upon him by his culture, not freely selected; they reflect the feminine values prevalent in Indian culture, values that Twinkle certainly detests.…
are all examples of exciting places on the internet where one can explore new people. Social networking sites are used to share information about who you are with the rest of the world. However, not all personal information is true. Creating a fake identity using social networks is becoming very popular in today’s society. Many people decide to make a profile with false personal information about them to meet a significant other, fulfill their desire to be someone they are not, and for the satisfaction…
Our Personal Identity
A person’s identity is composed of traits or characteristics that can be sensed by parent s right from birth; however, not all the traits that form one’s identity are obvious or even present at birth mainly because they are formed as the child matures and becomes an adult through that person’s…
where we belong can be challenging.’
‘Searching for who we are and where we fit in can take time.’ Identity is not just a matter of external circumstances, or of genetics: even identical twins, born and raised in the same environment, will differ from each other in their responses to the world and the personalities they develop. One human quality that we all share, despite our individual identities, is the need to belong. The warmth of a loving family or supportive friends sustains us and assists…
don’t have the ability to think individually yet and child are often ‘copy’ what they see every day, they will practice it and let it become a habit. When we become an adult, our behaviour and identity can reflex our childhood.
Environment (the city we live). Where we live often influence and shape our identity. Different city or country have different culture and uniqueness, therefore the people who live in this city might be affected. People who live in the Asia area are often shyer compare to the…
Running Head: Sexual and Gender Identity
Sexual and Gender Identity
Human Sexuality (01)
Professor Laurie Kosek
July 17, 2015
Sexual and Gender Identity
Sexual and Gender Identity
What makes a person a boy and a girl
Is it their anatomy, or is it their personal decision?
What are some factors that can contribute to your sexual and gender identity
religion, society, or
family? Does there ha…
English, ENG 3U0-J
Feb. 4th 2015
Short Story Diagnostic: “Identities”
Part A-fill in the following information.
Point of view: This passage is written in third person.
Protagonist: The protagonist is a wealthy man in the upper class who lives in a rich neighbourhood with his family.
What type of character is the protagonist? The protagonist has a dynamic character as he undergoes a change throughout the story.
Antagonist: Police Officer
Describe the setting: The story…
determined by one reproductive organs. Gender, however, is socially constructed. It is the way in which one acts in relation to the societal expectations of their sex. Our gender identity is the name given to the way in which a person acts in relation to their sex and societies expectations. The main influences on gender identity are the many different agents of socialisation. Socialisation is the process in which we learn the norms and values of the society we live in. Agents of socialisation are people…
The Roles of Identity in Society
Many would argue that social justice is being served when someone says “we are all the same under the skin”. We are not all the same under the skin. Within us are our own senses of identity, constructed by our familiar discourses, the physical environment and its embedded culture, and our individual differences. Our sense of identity accounts for our perceptions of ourselves and how we are positioned by others in terms of culture, tradition, rituals, race, family…
IDENTITY AND BELONGING
‘Knowing where you belong is essential to our sense of identity’
The quest for personal discovery is a journey which every individual must undergo. The development of a sense of self is one of the greatest achievements one can derive from life. Identity is made up of a constellation of characteristics, none more essential than the sense of belonging we feel with others. Humans by nature are social creatures and as such, we all have an instinctual desire for acceptance…