What evidence is there that the ending of the novel The Reluctant Fundamentalist is an unsatisfactory one?

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

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The ending of the novel is an unsatisfactory one if the reader is looking for a clear and direct telling of what happens between Changez and the American. I think that this becomes the only way in which the ending is unsatisfactory because no other conclusion can be reached in the ending's suspended state.  If one is going to argue from this point of view, then I think that there has to be a clear case made that Hamid has to make a definitive statement at the end of the novel.  Given how he has explored so much in the nature of his characters and of the global realities of displacement, fundamentalism/ terrorism, and personal alienation, he should have a clear ending that reflects a statement to this end.  This would be one possible path to pursue.  Another one would be to suggest that the narrative style of the work demands a clear ending.  Changez has left no detail revealed in the detailng of his life.  In being consistent with this idea, his ending has to be known as it completes the life narrative that he has given.  I think that this becomes another approach to take on this question.  It is not going to be easy to argue because I tend to think that the ending offered is the best one in order to make the work reflexive on the reader and the world in which we live more than anything else.

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