Cultural Identity in Monica Ali’s Brick Lane: A Bhabhian Perspective


This paper explores the question of cultural identity in Monica Ali’s Brick Lane (2003) through making specific reference to Homi Bhabha’s views of hybridity, third space, mimicry and ambivalence. Though Ali’s novel has been discussed in light of traditional postcolonialism, it has not been duly scrutinized through a dominantly Bhabhian perspective. Besides making use of Bhabha’s theories, this article draws upon the works of some other theorists of cultural identity such as Stuart Hall and Edward Said to highlight its emphasis on a Bhabhian approach. Grounding its discussion in Bhabha’s theory of cultural identity, it explores the way/s the major characters in Ali’s novel struggle to realize their sense of cultural identity in their own different ways. Specific emphasis is laid on the novel’s protagonist Nazneen and the development of her cultural identity.


Tawfiq Yousef


Brick Lane, cultural identity, Homi Bhabha, Monica Ali


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