Reluctant Fundamentalist

Topics: Literary technique, Mohsin Hamid, Fiction Pages: 2 (543 words) Published: January 15, 2013
In The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid uses a variety of literary devices to create the tone of confusion and agitation. By doing so, Mohsin Hamid also develops a theme of change. All these literary features combine to make an enthralling page-turner. One literary device used by the author to create restlessness in the reader is diction. The author intentionally uses words to create discomfort in the reader. “The twin towers of New York’s World Trade center collapsed. And then I smiled. Yes, despicable as it may sound (4-6).” The fact that the protagonist smiles at America’s misfortune only puts the reader at unease. Furthermore, the author himself suggests that the smile was a despicable reaction. However by making the reader anxious, Mohsin Hamid does only but one thing; lure in the reader to continue reading. This quote also denotes Changez’s change towards America. This is because, although Changez was “the product of an American university; (he) was earning a lucrative American salary; (he) was infatuated with an American woman (28-30)” his initial reaction to this incident was a smile. The repetition of the word “American” only creates the motif that Changez has supposedly become American. However after the attack, Changez’s smile only suggests otherwise; thereby creating the theme of change. Another literary device used by Mohsin Hamid to create a sense of confusion is the use of ambiguity through dramatic monologue. “It is hateful to hear another person gloat over one’s country’s misfortune. But surely you cannot be completely innocent of such feelings yourself (22-24).” Because the American does not speak, the reader is forced to create the personality of the American in his or her own mind. Thus, when the protagonist accuses the American of being guilty of such feelings, the protagonist is essentially accusing the reader of those feelings. The ambiguity of this quote further agitates the reader, yet at the same time forces the reader to continue...
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