Mohsin Hamid’s Reluctant Fundamentalist explores living of Changez in the United States being a young Pakistani man. Over the novel, mcdougal switches among two unique cultural configurations: the United States and a tea shop in Lahore, Pakistan. Additionally , mcdougal also is exploring the value of foodstuff and beverages in certain ethnical backgrounds. Hamid uses meals imagery to convey cultural values throughout the story. Throughout the novel, Hamid reveals the different sights cultures have on alcoholic beverages and during which in turn occasions it truly is used.
Even though Changez may seem just like a character with strong faith based morals, he can not. Although talking to Erica, he mentioned that “alcohol was unlawful for Muslims to buy therefore [he] had a Christian bootlegger” (27) deliver alcohol to his property. Changez’s romance with liquor does not quit there, as he “[polished] off another of a container of tequila before [he] was able to land asleep” (100) after watching television and feeling down. Additionally , this was not a usual neither regular occurrence for Changez as he has received the news that Americans were invading Afghanistan, which enraged him. The usage of alcohol in the Pakistani culture is used in a secretive approach, yet in Changez’s case it is employed as a approach to relieve stress or perhaps fall asleep. The writer highlights the very fact that Changez’s morals and loyalties are generally not straight being a Muslim gentleman, which could also influence how his persona is identified. Contrarily through the Pakistani human population, Americans use alcohol as a form of special event or in a special event. When Changez went to have got dinner with Erica and her father and mother, the dad’s first suggestion was to inquire if Changez drank since “he raised a jar of reddish colored wine” (53). On the other hand, Erica’s mother responded “He’s twenty-two (¦) within a tone that suggested, thus of course he drinks” (53). Since Erica’s father thought that none with the Pakistanis beverage, both of the parents’ response were unoriginal assumptions towards Changez wonderful culture. One thinking that like a twenty-two year old, it is evident that he can drink since it is exceeded legal age group in the United States. The other father or mother saying that as he once had a Pakistani working for him who would not drink, in that case all Pakistani men had been nondrinkers. Though something that Erica’s parents might not exactly have noted is that “many Pakistanis drink, alcohol’s illegality in [Pakistan] has around the same impact as pot in [America]inch (53). Hamid suggests that not knowing cultural background, it could bring about assumptions and misunderstandings, which usually happened in this case with Changez and Erica’s father. This leads to how the writer uses alcohol to represent different cultural ideals throughout the story: Changez, a representation of Pakistani men, does not include his probe straight with alcohol because Americans perform, who drink as a sort of enjoyment.
The author, during many situations in the new, makes use of meals imagery to connote the different ways food is respected and distributed in both backgrounds. The Pakistani culture is proven to have real food and possess people to have pride in it, too. Changez explained to the American the significant position food performed in his hometown, and generally in Pakistan. Changez mentioned how “[the American] must not pass such an real introduction to Lahori cuisine” as it was a “purely carnivorous feast” (101). The author illustrates h that “Pakistanis tend to have an inordinate pride in [their] food” (101) which will shows the value of food for the reason that culture. The regular meals just like “kebab of mutton, the tikka of chicken, the stewed ft . of goat¦” (101) express the value that Pakistanis possess for their foods. On the other hand, although not quite since sophisticated, Changez recalls him sharing “tea and cucumber sandwiches” (59) with his relatives in the foothills of the Himalayas. This highlights the idea of the cost of sharing meals with these close to you, because it is a treasured gift. However , in the United States, showing meals and food is definitely not seen as a value, nevertheless more like a common thing to do. For Changez, the fact that Erica “spread jam on the croissant, gave half to [him]” (19) seemed quite normal, since he got used to the American tradition. Erica easily shared her croissant with him, which exemplifies that it is something she does without thinking, and is not really viewed as a ‘value’ although more being a norm. A gesture as small as sharing a sandwich or croissant provides different which means behind it in different cultures. Hamid shows the value and benefit of writing food inside the Pakistani culture since they pride their meals as opposed to the Americans, who discuss theirs with out second thoughts.
Furthermore, Hamid uses the quality of the food to express the significance of it between your two distinctive cultures inside the Reluctant Fundamentalist. The Pakistani culture will not value the appearance of the food, nevertheless more the lining quality and what it brings to a person. The author evokes this through Changez, who may have experienced both the luxury and simplicity of food in various cultural areas. At Erica’s house 1 night, he “ate just bread and drank only water, a tasteless meal” (107) that eventually retained him complete. Even though his family was said to be wealthy, he liked “tea and cucumber sandwiches” (59) with them although it was not a lavish food. In contrast, Hamid makes the American culture benefit the class of their foodstuff more than the quality. Changez described how “the environment was excellent, the wine was delicious, the burgers had been succulent” (54) in the home of Erica’s father and mother. Changez describes the configurations and foodstuff in a specifically formal approach, which demonstrates how advanced the food is to Americans. Erica and Changez have also experienced a quite fancy eat outside with “wine, fresh-baked bread, sliced chicken, several big difference cheeses and grapes ” a delicious (¦) and a rather sophisticated assortment” (58). Once again, in a attractive background, the author shows the importance of the American culture by simply luxurious meals and clashes it with Pakistani’s value of simplicity. This demonstrates the author’s opinion within the importance of sophistication in the United States rather than Pakistan.
All in all, through the use of specific food and beverage imagery, mcdougal manages to produce and communicate specific ethnical values throughout the novel. Hamid explores other ways alcohol can be valued, while either a way of celebrating or possibly a way of reducing stress. In addition, food writing was also portrayed because an important worth for equally cultures in various ways, showing that they are for some reason similar inspite of their differences. Also, the plainness as well as the finesse from the food as well brought up thinking about the importance of quality in the united states versus Pakistan. Hamid delivers different aspects showing how food is valued in the United States and Pakistan by creating important scenes where it is used to check out distinctive ethnical values and backgrounds.