The Effects of Inescapable Memories in Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowland
Abstract: The paper discusses the effects of disruptive memories in Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowland. The death of Udayan and the memories of it make the existence of three characters dysfunctional: Bijoli, Gauri, and Bela. Of them, the former two have witnessed the killing while the latter has vicariously felt its everlasting impact on her psychological upbringing. Bijoli, who is the mother of Udayan, is rooted to the time and place of her son’s killing, and Gauri, the wife of Udayan, is crushed in between the remembering and the forgetting of her husband’s existence. Gauri wants to but cannot forget the past she left behind; her attempts to forget, on the other hand, largely affect her daughter, Bela’s life. The article focuses on the overwhelming and all-consuming power of unpleasant memories and concomitant psychosocial crisis of them.
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Published in 2016