The Namesake and Bend it Like Beckham Belonging essay

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My two texts are “The Namesake” and “Bend it like Beckham”. Our prescribed text, Jhumpa Lahiris “The Namesake” explores the link to belonging in detail. The emphasis is on Gogol Ganguli. Gogol struggles with a sense of belonging to his family and his Bengali culture and heritage throughout his life in the course of the novel. Born and raised in the U.S., while his parents spent their entire life in India following Bengali culture and practices and moved on to America as young adults. Gogol must try to find a sense of belonging as he deals with trying to belong in American society, while following his Bengali traditions. This shares many similarities with Jesmindar Bhamra, the main character in my related text, “Bend it Like Beckham”. The …show more content…
Gogol moves in with Maxine where he adopts her families’ American way of life. It’s here that he seems to find a sense of peace and feels as though as belongs. “At times, as the laughter at Gerald and Lydia's table swells, and another bottle of wine is opened, and Gogol raises his glass to be filled yet again, he is conscious of the fact that his immersion in Maxine's family is a betrayal of his own.(155) The more time he spends with people like Maxine and her family, the Ratliffs, the farther away Gogol becomes from his own culture and family. The world of the Ratliffs is appealing, although it's not his world. It's a white, rich, American world, and Gogol is none of those things. “He is conscious of the fact that his immersion in Maxine’s family is a betrayal of his own”(138). It’s at this point that Gogol has adopted Maxine’s American family as his own and feels as though he has finally found something he can value and belong to. “She (Maxine) is surprised to hear certain things about his life that all his parents’ friends are Bengali, that they had had an arranged marriages, that his mother cooks Indian food every day, that she wears saris and a bindis. “Really?” she says, not fully believing him. “But you’re so different. I would never have thought that.”(180). This is how distant Gogol has become to his old self. Gogols experiences with Maxine pulls his sense of belonging towards his American