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The language of diaspora in Jhumpa Lahiri's Unaccustomed earth

Author: Brittany Kemper; Cleveland State University. Department of English.
Publisher: Cleveland, Ohio : Cleveland State University, 2011.
Dissertation: Thesis (M.A.)--Cleveland State University, 2011.
Edition/Format:   Thesis/dissertation : Document : Thesis/dissertation : State or province government publication : eBook   Computer File : English
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
This study combines Mikhail Bakhtin's concept of polyphony with the study of diaspora because it allows for an inclusive study of the reciprocating relationships between culture, language, and the representation and acculturation of identity. Polyphony can not only address the present and future sense of self of characters, it can also keep diasporic studies from becoming too limiting by exploring the different  Read more...
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Details

Named Person: Jhumpa Lahiri; Jhumpa Lahiri
Material Type: Document, Thesis/dissertation, Government publication, State or province government publication, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Brittany Kemper; Cleveland State University. Department of English.
OCLC Number: 727359099
Notes: Advisor: Jeff Karem.
Abstract.
Title from PDF t.p. (viewed May 6, 2011).
Description: 1 online resource (iv, 57 p.) : ill., digital, PDF file.
Responsibility: by Brittany Kemper.

Abstract:

This study combines Mikhail Bakhtin's concept of polyphony with the study of diaspora because it allows for an inclusive study of the reciprocating relationships between culture, language, and the representation and acculturation of identity. Polyphony can not only address the present and future sense of self of characters, it can also keep diasporic studies from becoming too limiting by exploring the different voices at work in the characters' construction of self. Jhumpa Lahiri's short fiction is appropriate for this study because of her stories' simultaneous autonomy and interconnectedness, a key component to polyphony. As Lahiri's characters remember back to earlier generations and look ahead to future ones, and as they constantly struggle to construct an identity in their interactions with diverse and traditional characters, Lahiri's stories emphasize the transience not only of a sense of self dependent upon locale, but also of how a sense of self is always contingent upon a character's ability to cope with and communicate with an ever-changing world. In general, the characters who rely too heavily on homeland nostalgia and the characters who look only toward progressing in diasporic space are unsuccessful in finding a space for their own identity. To truly construct self revolves around the ability to transcend these oppositions as either-or scenarios and accept and navigate them as personal options or beliefs.

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