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House of Sand and Fog - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Course Date House of sand and fog Introduction The House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III is similar to Harry Muslich’s the Assault in a number of ways in a number of fundamental aspects. The novel House of Sand and Fog however is based upon the lives of two families that come from different backgrounds…
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Download file to see previous pages Dubus makes a critical analysis of the lives of the several main characters in the novel; Kathy, Behrani and Sheriff Lester Burdon (Dubus 67-96). The novel The House of Sand and Fog has been acclaimed by literary critics as one of the most accurate portrayals of the struggle of immigrants. Critics have also lauded it as portraying the difficulties in integration due to a lack of understanding between immigrants and citizens. The author delves deeper into the psyches of all the characters which enable him to effectively weave a story from the perspective of both the protagonist and the antagonists. The author effectively weaves a story intended to show how the actions of characters come to affect the lives of all the characters to a large extent (Ark 155-175). The action taken by the county in selling Kathy’s house is followed by a domino like kind of effect. Behrani buys the house intending to profit from it s cheap offer price. It later comes to light that the county erred in evicting Kathy for the house and therefore Behrani is supposed to return the house. Behrani refuses insisting on being paid premium rather than the auction price he paid for it. The action undertaken by Behrani in buying the house and refusing to return it makes the lives of the antagonists and protagonist intertwine in a tragic web which ultimately sucks in all the people in their lives. While issues of morality may be invoked concerning the behavior of the characters, the story also has to be analyzed from the perspective of the times. Background Dubus starts the novel by introducing Massoud Behrani a former officer in the army of the overthrown Shah who has fled to exile in the United States. Behrani’s former position in Iran makes it difficult for him to establish himself in the United States which makes him resort to menial jobs in order to make a living. On the other hand Kathy Nicolo the antagonist is a drug addict is evicted from her family house allegedly over unpaid taxes. The county which had evicted Kathy puts up the house for sale through action. The house is eventually bought by Behrani at a bargain price with the intention of resale at a premium and as a stepping stone for his entry into real estate business. The story represents the spirit of the immigrants who faced with high odds continued to believe in the American Dream and took their opportunities when they came by (Keuffer). Kathy moves out of the house only to come to the knowledge through Lester Burdon that the county was wrong in evicting her. A struggle then ensues between Behrani and Kathy as Behrani refuses to move out of the house unless he is paid a premium price. Kathy then tries to commit suicide but is unsuccessful on two occasions. A chain of events follow which leads to the killing of Behrani’s son by the authorities and ultimately the attempted murder of Kathy, Behrani’s wife and Behrani’s suicide. Dubus thus brings into play the issue of morality and the issue of independence and self determination that is sought by both immigrants and the citizens (Coffin). The major characters of The House of Sand and Fog are the protagonist: Behrani and his family, and the antagonists Kathy Nicolo and Deputy Lester Burdon who attempts to get back Kathy’s house from Behrani. These characters are analyzed below in terms of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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