Analysis

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Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 212

In We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo, the author reveals the adverse effects of the hyperinflation that Zimbabwe experienced between 2007 and 2008. Without specifically focusing on inflation as a theme, the author concentrates on the life of Darling and her friends. They live in shanty houses and they do not go to school because their school was closed.

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Darling, who is from a country that is undergoing an economic crisis, goes to a "first-world" country. Bulawayo highlights the significant differences between a country facing economic hardship and one that is prospering. Although during this time the United States was going through a financial crisis, it could not be compared to Zimbabwe. Darling is impressed by how people order products and services using their phones, the availability of running water, and the wastage of food; these things were unheard of in her home country.

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Moreover, the author tries to reveal to the reader the hardships immigrants experience. As part of that immigrant experience, Bulawayo discloses the underlying motivators for people to migrate to another country. Despite some people's perceptions that immigrants tend to bring crime to and take the jobs of locals, the author shows that in many cases, Bulawayo argues that people migrate because it is a matter of life or death.

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