My Son The Fanatic Characterization

How would you characterize Parvez's, Ali's, and Bettina's perspectives on life in My Son the Fanatic?

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The short story "My Son the Fanatic" by Hanif Kureishi tells of a clash between a father of Pakistani heritage who has adapted well to the culture of his new homeland in the West and his son who has chosen to live by traditional Islamic values. The story works well because of the nuanced characterizations, which present both the father's and the son's points of view sympathetically. The prostitute Bettina serves as a focal point at the climax of the story that illustrates the differences between the viewpoints of father and son.

Parvez, the father, has been driving a taxi in England for twenty years. He has adopted Western customs, such as the eating of pork and the consumption of alcoholic drinks, which, as his son points out, are contrary to guidelines set out in Islamic law. Parvez works hard to support his family and has typically Western aspirations for his son Ali. He is proud of Ali for excelling at sports and for getting good grades. He wants to see Ali "get a good job, now, marry...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 1187 words.)

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