James ZhaoEng111Meryl PetersOct.31thWords count (1789 words)The hidden cycle under Interpreter of MaladiesIn the book Interpreter of Maladies by Lahiri, there are nine stories in the whole book. This book has a cycle between nine stories. This essay contends that the book is a combination of nine different stories and is also have a cycle in the whole book. There are some relate between them.
But it doesn’t show so clearly. However, there is a line can connect each stories. The biggest line in this book that Lahiri weaves is communication in families, Indian community and the culture shock.Characters are a big part element of fiction, in nine these stories, there are many Characters in this book and they have their own stories. In this book, communication has been a big problem between characters, lacking of communication or unexpressed feelings weigh on several characters, destroying their relationship.
For example, “A Temporary Matter”, “The interpreter of Maladies”, and “This blessed house” are talk about the marriage problem in couples who living in America, all these couples have a common problem, they don’t have enough communication in their marriage. The first story, “A Temporary Matter”, the husband and the wife have less communication since they lose their child. However, the darkness was a blessing in disguise as it brings them closer. They have less communication since they lost their child and at end of the story, the wife decides to tell the husband that she is leaving him after they have had a joyful conversation. The husband reacts by telling the wife a bitter truth that regards the child that was still-born which the husband wants to keep as a secret. This leads to their final separation as the story comes to an end in what can be termed as a melancholic story.
A remarkable quote from this story that shows the mood of sadness and the theme of melancholy is when Shukmar reminisces about his marriage to Shomar and remembers “how long it had been since she looked into his eyes and smiled, or whispered his name on those rare occasions they still reached for each other’s bodies before sleeping” (5). It shows that wife and husband shouldn’t hide that much “secret”. They just need communication.
In the third story, “the interpreter of Maladies” is similar as the first one, the wife has a big “secret” to his husband, she tells Mr. Kapasi her child Bobby isn’t the child of his husband. She does this because she married too early and lost the enthusiasm of the marriage. She feels pain of this because she doesn’t have many people she can tell.
When Mr. Kapasi says “Is it really pain you feel, Mrs.Das, or is it guilt?”(66), Mrs. Das starts to try to integrate into this family again.
This also can be considered as a communication problem between families. For example, if Mrs.Das and Mr. Das have enough communication between each other, will they have this problem and makes Mrs.Das feels this pain? The communication problem also happens in This Blessed House, which a young couple gets married soon after they met.
In other words, they are new to each other, so they don’t know each other too much because they don’t have enough communication. We can also see there are some communication problems between child and parents. In When Mr. Pirzada Came To Dine Lilia thinks there is no different from her parents and Mr. Pirzada , they use same language , eat same food and enjoy talking to each other, Lilia’s parents are frustrated by Lilia’s ignorance of current events in their homeland; because of her study in America. This is a disconnection between parents and child both across generational and cultural lines.
In the interpreter of Maladies, Mrs.Das does care about her child; the evidence is she lost her boy at the end of story. In “Mrs.
Sen”, we can also see problems between Eliot and his mother of lacking of communications (although they are not Indians). In this case, the communication can be considered as an important reason why most of these stories happen.
Setting is another important element of fiction.
There are two stories have no American in and both of them are setting in the Indian area and they both show Indian community, “A Real Durwan” and” The Treatment of Bibi Haldar”. In “A Real Durwan”, this story reflects on the life of Boorima, a lady whose current job is keeping a gate in an apartment that is occupied by some tenants in the middle class social strata in India. According to her, she never receives any payment for her job she does of gate-keeping, as this is a job that she assigned to herself, though she has gained a reputation of doing her job very well. The only incentive she has for keeping the gate is that, in addition to sweeping the corridors as well as doing other light duties around apartments, she earns the right to sleep behind the gate.
Because of her good nature, occasionally she gets to enjoy a free cup of tea as well. However, at the end of the story, she is blamed for carelessness of losing the sink and then she was thrown out of the apartment. It is shown how the society degrades those who are poor, and how some people have compassion.Theme exploited here is that of social stature..