Extract of sample "Zadie Smith's White Teeth Identity and Progress"
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Joshua supports the environmental group FATE, while his own father supports the genetically-produced FutureMouse. Samad’s twin sons, Magid and Millat, also believe in different goals; the eldest is one with Marcus and his scientific future, while Millat embraces a fundamentalist view of religion and society. White Teeth argues that people build relationships based on their inner preferences and external pressures on life and their differences will perpetually clash, but they have to accept that as part of human identity and progress. People are born to be different in ideas and beliefs, because of their own choices in life and external influences on the development of their human identity. The novel includes three generations that intersects the “themes of heritage and family history” (Chernysheva 3). Every generation has important questions that they wish to answer. For Samad, he wants to conserve history, which he also does through promoting the myth of his great-grandfather, whose role in Indian history is not entirely reliable. Archie also feels the same nostalgia for the past. His so-called war wound is not real, because he put it on himself. Despite this self-inflicted wound, Archie creates a memory of the war with a strong sense of “self-defensiveness” (Chernysheva 3). Samad and Archie essentially promote a traditional approach to history and identity formation. They repeat their wartime concerns, where they usually find people forgetting the war, as if it is not important. These best friends, nevertheless, do everything to preserve their fabricated history of the war. Samad comes from a generation that sees history in a linear relationship, where every action has a consequence (Chernysheva 3). He supports the notions of karma and fate. Clara’s mother, Hortense, has the same views but for her, religion has become a different lens from which she makes sense of history. The generation of the youngest characters experience and see the future in diverse prisms and for different expectations and goals. The Iqbal twins believe in conflicting values. Magid, who lives most of adolescent life in Bangladesh, returns to England with a more Westernized view than the English themselves, while Millat finds truth and peace in fundamentalist religion. Samad is disappointed that Magid becomes more ultra-Westernized, when he planned for him to continue their traditions. The twins follow extremes ideologies that threaten to break their family apart. Irie has her own personal struggles. She is divided between her volunteer work in Africa and an occupation as a dentist and also faces diverse choices for hairdos and weight-loss plans. Irie’s child, however, bears the consequences of Irie’s choices (Chernysheva 3). The demolition of the Berlin Wall represents the demolition of obstacles to individual freedoms and differences (Chernysheva 3). Traditions versus modernity clash in influencing human progress and identity. Samad “moves between positions of authority and deauthorisation or subordination” (Gustar 335). He wants to impose his authority, but he does not have any power over his own family. He exaggerates his claims regarding his life, but he is “also emasculated by a radicalized discourse in an ethnocentric culture that often treats him as subaltern” (Gustar 335). Ironically, he spreads lies about his heritage that only makes him smaller as a person, since he cannot achieve the same level of greatness. Since he cannot control his life, he applies power chiefly over his family and children and even uses kidnapping to send his elder child to Bangladesh (Gustar 335). He does this because he knows that in the end, his
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As such, for purposes of this brief essay, the author will examine the following two works of fiction and draw inference as to the ways in which narrative structure and imagery are utilized to compound the thematic nuances that their respective authors are attempting to engage the reader with: Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale and Zadie Smith’s White Teeth.
We do this with the use of perception in our thought processes. Our belief system develops during our growing up years, when we interact with our parents and with the society at large. Soon the way we respond becomes our habit and then it gets labeled as Personality and that gets stamped as our identity.
In the context of the developed world it will be true to say that more or less, people today are free to think and speak whatever they want to. Yet, the truth that has indeed failed to escape the human attention is the fact that irrespective of the much hue and cry being made about the contemporary ‘melting pot’ global phenomena one could distinctly notice that this world comprises of varied cultures, races, ethnicities and nationalities.
The primary narration of the book spans the years 1975 to two thousand, but in flashback, the novel goes back to about 1906 or beyond. Zadie, in hysterical realism style, cuts between events, perspectives, opinions, and periods with a film like deftness, joining such isolated narratives into a single story.
The dictionary defines progress in relation to our reading material as follows: the development of an individual or society in a direction considered more beneficial than and superior to the previous level” (dictonary.com). Keeping that definition in mind, I thought it best to start off this essay by discussing the Kirckpatrick Sale’s essay “Five Facets of Myth”.
Within the social circle, identity is related the manner a person adapts to the social world. Three of the most used typologies in identity are psychological symptoms. Personality symptoms and social symptoms, the main characteristics that are used in identifying a persons with differ identity in relation to the three foundations are drifters guardians, resolvers, searcher and refusers.
White Teeth has been translated into over twenty languages and was adapted for Channel 4 television in 2002. Zadie Smith has also edited an anthology of erotic stories, Piece of Flesh (2001), and was nominated as one of the best of young British novelists by Granta magazine in 2003.
The writer presents a multiethnic fabric with brilliancy and understanding, and all the characters are fully and vibrantly sketched. The dialogues were humorous, sensitive, sensible and without pretension. The writer received rave reviews for her first book.
According to the research findings, it can, therefore, be said that White Teeth seeks to investigate the journeys and histories of the male characters to account for the problems men go through while acclimatizing to life in a country that has an influential and a memorable colonization historical period.
The novel has attained general acclaim as the most remarkable fictional creation of multiculturalism. Religion is one of the most significant aspects which directly deal with the question of multiculturalism and it has a prominent place in determining the positive and negative results of multiculturalism.
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