Sunday, 26 April 2009

"My Son the Fanatic" by Hanif Kureishi

"My Son the Fanatic" is a short story by Hanif Kureishi about a teenage boy, Ali, and his father, Parvez, who are immigrants of Pakistan now living in England. The underlying theme is the struggle they face in a new society. There is a sharp contrast in the way Parvez and his son Ali deal with the sense of belonging and being a part of society. With all the compromises and losses Parvez suffers in his migration; he appears to take them as a part of his experience and adventure of life; to him it seems to be worth the price. On the other hand, his son Ali seems to have considerable anger and is not happy with his new lifestyle. Ali focuses his thoughts on the Koran, a Muslim form of belief that denies him the pleasure of society in which he lives. His past life, being devoted to this pleasure, is now spent in abstinence.
Kureishi shows how living in a new society can cause one to lose fundamental family values and disrupt family happiness.


1 comment:

  1. As the story develops Parvez seems to have completely lost his son, Ali. In fact, he cannot even recognize him…By the end of the story this bewildered father also loses his temper and hits his son…Why do you think he reacts like that? Is it that difficult to respect others and let them lead their own lives? Who do think is the fanatic in the end?
    After the debate we have had in class, these questions have been going on my head…and there are many answers as well as points of view…I believe it would be great if we could share them in our “blog”…
    Looking forward to “reading” from you,