An Analysis of Hell-Heaven by Jhumpa Lahiri

Good Essays
Henny Betancourt
Jennifer Williams
English 1301
Cultures
Love, generations, cultures, and family are the main theme to talk about in shorts stories, and in the story of “Hell-Heaven” by Jhumpa Lahiri, that is not the exception. However, it is an unusual and very enjoyable story where readers can identify themselves with it because the main characters are common people who have the same problems as many of us. If I have to summarize the story in one sentence, I can say that it describes the experiences of people who come from other cultures to the USA, and it is nuanced with an impossible love to make it more interesting and real. Also, the author divided the different parts of it with four important events which mark the transition from one part to another. For that reason, during the story, we find how a Bengali family still attached to their roots, and the different point of views of the life between people who were born here like Usha, an undergraduate student who met the Usha’s family, Kaku, who is from the same country as Usha’s family, and Usha’s parents more specific her mother.
First of all, the first important event is when Usha and her mother met Kaku in the beginning of the story, and he became part of their family making a change in their routine lives, and gave us an idea on how shocking could be life in USA for international students. For example, in Kaku’s case “In his first month he lost nearly twenty pounds. He had arrived in January, in the middle of a snowstorm, and at the end of a week he had packed his bags and gone to Logan, prepared to abandon the opportunity he’d worked toward all his life” (1). That reflects the sacrifices that some people have to pass through in order to achieve their goals, such as leaving behind a family, friends, and traditions. In additions, there are a lot of evidences about how conservative and rooted to her culture Usha’s mother, Boudi, is, but that is one of the things that is going to be a problem in the

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