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How do Hamid's values help to create the text?

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lalalanda | Student | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted September 25, 2012 at 2:25 PM via web

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How do Hamid's values help to create the text?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted October 7, 2012 at 12:57 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that Hamid's own values in seeking to understand the central issues in the text help to create it.  Consider his own words to this point in interviews about cultural identity and examine how closely such ideas help to create the text:

As someone who is naturally split between two cultures, the fact that the cultures are becoming so increasingly hostile to each other makes me much more unsettled within myself.  (NPR Fresh Air interview with Terry Gross on The Reluctant Fundamentalist)

This is an example of one of Hamid's values that help to construct or develop the text.  Like Hamid, Changez is split between the American and Pakistani culture that helps to establish the sense of the "unsettled" that dominates the text.  Another example of a value that Hamid holds is the idea of how his own political dispositions help to construct a setting in which both sides in the "War on Terror" are wrong in their fundamentalist approach:

 I believe that the core skill of a novelist is empathy: the ability to imagine what someone else might feel. And I believe that the world is suffering from a deficit of empathy at the moment. The political positions of both Osama Bin Laden and George W. Bush are founded on failures of empathy, failures of compassion toward people who seem different.

In this, one sees how Hamid's political values help to construct the text.  Hamid's perceived failure of both Bin Laden and Bush help to drive the fact that Changez is seen as both victim and perpetrator of that which is wrong.  In this, an authorial value is present in the construction of the text.

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