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


Abstract

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.

Authors

Tawfiq Yousef

Keywords

Brick Lane, cultural identity, Homi Bhabha, Monica Ali

Full Text :

http://ijaes.zu.edu.jo/article/fulltext/view?volume=19&issue=1&id=4

D:\Full_SourcePublished\volume19\issue1\4.pdf

References

Bhabha, Homi. (1990). ‘The Third Space. Interview with Homi Bhabha’. In Jonathan Rutherford (ed.), Identity: Community, Culture, Difference, 207- 221.London: Lawrence and Wishart. Bhabha, Homi. (1994). The Location of Culture. London and New York: Rutledge. Chattopadhyay, Sagarika and Jaya Shrivastava. (2012). ‘Transitional identities and the unhomed space in Monica Ali’s Brick Lane and Tishani Doshi’s The pleasure seekers’. Asiatic, 6 (1):111- 124. Chandler, D. and R. Munday. (2011). Oxford Dictionary of Media and Communication. Oxford: Oxford University Press. D’Arcy, Rebecca Mary. (2015). ‘Identity, material culture and thing theory in two British migrant novels’. Postcolonial Text, 10 (2): 1-12. Erikson, Erik. (1950). Childhood and Society. New York: W. W. Norton. Fernandez, Irene Pérez. (2009). ‘Representing third spaces, fluid identities and contested spaces in contemporary British literature’. Journal of the Spanish Association of Anglo-American Studies, 31(2): 143–160. Gupta, Akhil & James Ferguson. (1992). ‘Beyond culture: Space, identity, and the politics of Difference’. Cultural Anthropology, (71): 6-23. Hall, Stuart. (1998). ‘Cultural identity and diaspora’. In Jonathan Rutherford (ed.), Identity:Community, Culture, Difference, 222-237. London: Lawrence and Wishart. Hall, Stuart. (1995). ‘Interview with Roger Bromley’. In Jessica Munns and Gita Rajan (eds.). A Cultural Studies Reader: History, Theory, Practice, 659-673. London: Longman. Holliday, Adrian. (2010). ‘Complexity in cultural identity’. Language and Intercultural Communication, 10 (2): 165-177. Hussain, Yasmin. (2016). Writing Diaspora: South Asian women, Culture and Ethnicity. New York: Routledge. Kim, Young Yun. (2007). ‘Ideology, identity, and intercultural communication: An analysis of differing academic conceptions of cultural identity’. Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 36 (3):237–253. Majed, Hassan. (2012). Islam and Muslim identities in four contemporary British novels. Unpublished Ph.D. thesis, University of Sunderland, Scotland, Britain. Said, Edward. (1978). Orientaalism. London: London University Press. Sterrett, Susan E. (2015). ‘Interprofessional learning as a third space: Rethinking health profession students’ development and identity through the concepts of Homi Bhabha’ Humanities, 4: 653–660. Wren, Thomas. (2002). ‘Cultural identity and personal identity’. In Albert W. Musschenga et al. (eds.), Personal and Moral Identity, 231- 258. Detroit, Boston, London: Kluwer Academic Publishers.