Presentation on theme: "C HAPTER 12 The Reluctant Fundamentalist. C HAPTER 12 Leaving Am/Erica Changez is telling the story of how he left America. Why is it italicised? Left."— Presentation transcript:
C HAPTER 12 Leaving Am/Erica Changez is telling the story of how he left America. Why is it italicised? Left both physically and emotionally. Lost something to Erica- still thought of NY. Fantasised about a life with Erica in which both worlds could meet. Still holding on to Erica, hoping he will hear of her in the Princeton paper. ‘Content to wait’- still deluded? p.200
Changez and Nostalgia Changez describes his mourning for Erica as “tidal”, which resonates with Erica’s descriptions of her own grief (water/tide motif) Changez recounts detailed daydreams of the life he and Erica might have lived together in Lahore He is “transported” by thoughts of her He obsessively trawls through the Princeton Alumni Weekly and “time did not diminish the eagerness with which [he] looked” Changez’s mother, believing him to be in the “grip of an unhealthy melancholy,” thinks he ought to marry
Actions towards America: Changez tells how he is now a university lecturer, advocating Pakistan’s disengagement from America. Pushing greater independence in Pakistan’s affairs. Involved in protests- labelled anti-American. Has received official warnings for his courses. P.205 One of his students was arrested for plotting to assassinate a coordinator of America’s efforts. P.206 Changez states that he does not believe in violence, he is simply a university lecturer. Do we believe him? The American’s facial expressions suggest that he most likely doesn’t… Changez interviewed and warned that America might send an emissary to intimidate him or worse p.208 Is this the American? Initially he was paranoid about getting killed but now he realises he must meet his fate when it confronts him?? He recounts his involvement in demonstrations for “greater independence”, including one that led to a night in gaol He’s also come close to losing his job at the University
C HAPTER 12 Fear/Suspicion/Paranoia P.200 American is startled, worries about men following them. Changez suggests that they are probably wondering why they have stopped- each equally suspicious of each other. Sound familiar? P.201 The American texting his colleagues? Why do you think Changez might be “plagued by paranoia”? What has led to this?
Fear/Suspicion/Paranoia Alludes to The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (story of paranoia, fear, intimidation) The American appears “decidedly anxious” and “ready to bolt” There is suggestion that they are being followed and that Changez is signaling to their pursuant, Changez denies this Changez refers to the “end of our time together” and later, a “glint of metal” One of the closing ideas of the chapter is “you should not imagine that we Pakistanis are all potential terrorists, just as we should not imagine that you Americans are all undercover assassins.”
Fear/Suspicion/Paranoia- Kurtz and Marlow “like a Kurtz waiting for his Marlow” Refers to Joseph Conrad’s novel Heart of Darkness - The hero, Marlow, happens upon Kurtz, just as he is dying - allowing Kurtz to have his final words be heard - Hamid uses this intertextual reference to create an atmosphere of suspicion - Is Changez about to be killed by the American? - Is he about to die in a suicide attack against the American? - Has his ‘story’ been at attempt to have his last words heard before he goes?
Prejudice P.208-9 ‘You should not imagine that we Pakistanis are all potential terrorists, just as we should not imagine that you Americans are all undercover assassins’. Is this the whole point?
He notes that after “one’s boundaries… have been blurred and made permeable by a relationship… we cannot reconstitute ourselves as the autonomous beings we previously imagined ourselves to be” Applies to Erica with Chris, and Changez with Erica Who else’s boundaries have been blurred?
Is Changez not afraid because he has back up and knows that the American is about to be killed by his men? Or has Changez accepted his fate and is ready to die now that he has told his story? Is the American simply about to give his business card to Changez because they understand each other and have bonded?
C HAPTER 12: TASKS 1. The fate of both Erica and Changez is the same in The Reluctant Fundamentalist. To what extent do you agree? Draw a PMI table of your ideas. 2. My interpretation of chapter 12 is… Other evidence from the novel to support my interpretation includes… Positive (evidence for) Minus (evidence against) Interesting (anything else of relevance)
Hamid has allowed you to “co-create” the story. You provide the other half of the novel’s meaning based on your own biases. So what have you learned about yourself in this “oddly reflective mirror”?