It is the dream of every immigrant to live a worry free life in a new country that can offer so much. A place where one can work for suitable wages, a place where one can raise their children free of the problems plaguing their previous country and a place where one can grow spiritually and socially. While some people might believe that immigrants struggle ends when they come to America, filmmaker Mira Nair, argues against this statement by demonstrating the struggle of immigrants over the decision of assimilating into the “new” identity and society’s beliefs, clinging on to past cultures and lifestyles, and in some cases with the thought of returning back to their country.
Immigrants constantly struggles with the difficult decision of living in one culture, yet belonging to another. The film Namesake by Mira Nair clearly illustrates the struggle of first-generation immigrants to assert a western identity, as well as to maintain their Bengali traditions. As soon as Ashoke and Ashima arrived to America the audience can observe the struggles Ashima has adapting to the new country. However, she sends a letter back to India talking about the conveniences of American life, like running water and gas that is available twenty-four hours a day. But she still misses her old life with its predictable rhythms and relatives. Nair also explores the challenges faced by the children being second-generation immigrants, represented by the main character, Gogol, who attempts to shed his Bengali identity to fully embody the American status. Yet, the journey toward re-invention, was a struggle for him. He tried so hard to not be associated to the Bengali tradition by moving out of his parents house becoming an architect, and engaging in a relationship with an American Girl. However, after the death of his father he realize how important culture and family is in his life.
In most of the cases immigrants never stop thinking about their birth... [continues]
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