It is no secret that life for Muslims. non merely in America but globally. has gotten more hard than it already was pre-September 11th. Naber’s Arab Americans and U. S Racial Formations every bit good as Hamid’s Reluctant Fundamentalist represent the issues covering with Muslim diasporic life in America. Post September 11th. Moslems and anyone deemed that looks like a Muslim ( intending anyone who has brown tegument. a face fungus. and facial characteristics that the Nazi’s deemed Jewish ) have had to cover racial profiling. racial stereotypes. detest offenses and other signifiers of racism. In Hamid’s Reluctant Fundamentalist Hamid uses two characters as metaphors for America and each one represents different diasporic issues Moslems have had to cover with before and after 9/11.
One of these characters that represents America is Changez’s love involvement. Erica ; like America she accepts this alien. makes him experience like she accepts him. merely to reject him. The alteration she goes through after 9/11 represents the alteration America had gone through during that clip. “The onslaughts churned up old ideas in my caput. ” . this alteration within Erica-America represents two things. America returning to her old ways and that means the return of the issues of race dealingss in America. Hamid chose to stand for America with a adult female on intent ; through Erica America is described as esteemed. desirable. and powerful. which is what 1 everyone hopes to be one time they’ve immigrated to the U. S.
The other character that represents America is Underwood Samson. Changez’s topographic point of work. Underwood Samson represents America as a corporation significance that net incomes are first and foremost what is of import. This besides represents how Changez and many other immigrants have to intermix in and experience the demand to have on a mask. merely like in the corporate universe where there is a frock codification. a hierarchy. and deficiency of diverseness. The fact that Changez works at Underwood Samson is symbolic of how Muslims in America are brainwashed into burying their beginning and heritage in order to suit in and stay under the radio detection and ranging. These representations bring to light issues of belonging and cultural citizenship in the Muslim diasporic life in the U. S. In footings of belonging and cultural citizenship. Hamid paints a really monstrous image of Muslim Diasporic life in the United States. Changez starts off an foreigner. so believes he is an American merely to recognize that he is non and will ne’er be because America’s race dealingss are ever in gesture.
“In this sense. the ‘invisible citizens’ became ‘visible topics. ’” ( Naber 2 ) Muslims went from being unobserved and non disquieted about until 9/11 where they so became “visible subjects” . As a merchandise of being unobserved. Muslims were under the the false feeling that the United States had accepted them and that they were Americans. Changez represents the Muslim community’s transmutation from unseeable to seeable. This is represented in the novel in many signifiers. when Changez is rejected by Erica-America during sexual intercourse. when he realizes that he has more in common with the adult male on the bike than his ain co-workers and when he forced to vacate from his Underwood Samson. These are all representations of how America marginalized and made the Muslim 2 community feel like foreigners post 9/11. When Changez resigns from Underwood Samson. symbolically. he is vacating from the United States. experiencing like foreigner in what is suppose to be his place forces him to this determination.
This besides representative of the groups of Muslims that have been targeted by hate offenses and favoritism and have been made to experience like foreigners in their ain vicinities and later hold had to go forth to guarantee safety for themselves and their households. “U. S. discourses on multiculturalism after 9/11 paralleled the rhetoric of the Bush disposal and the corporate media that distinguished between “good Arabs or Muslims” and “bad Muslims. ”” ( Naber 3 ) With this hapless effort to alleviate the force per unit area off Muslim communities the U. S. Government and corporate media merely strengthened the thought that Muslims were now non Americans but foreigners because there is no manner to state who is a “good” or “bad” Muslim. If the Government truly wanted to take the force per unit area off it would merely be a terrorist onslaught committed by Al-Qaeda. a terrorist group without the nexus to Islam because now they have made the word terrorist synonymous with Islam and therefore synonymous with Muslims.
As portrayed in the novel. after 9/11. Moslems had bureau in the United States as the other. as foreigners. Through an equivocal enemy and obscure definitions and differentiations between Muslims and terrorists confusion of the American public gave them no pick but to group the two together and insulate them. “In other words. bodily stigmata become forms of a religious heritage as opposed to a biological heredity. ” ( Naber 280 ) There was no manner for the populace to separate between “good” and “bad” Muslims so like the Jews of Nazi Germany stereotypes of the manner Muslims expression enable the populace to project out. penalize. and know apart against Muslims 3 and those who “look” Muslim.
Hamid brings forth an interesting construct with the character of Juan Bautista ( John the Baptist ) and the narrative of the Janissary. “I was a modern twenty-four hours Janissary a retainer of the American imperium at a clip when it was occupying a state with a affinity to mine. ” ( Hamid ) The interpolation of this narrative implies that all Muslims life and working in the United States during the station 9/11 period are Janissaries in a sense. I would hold to strongly hold with this construct due to the strong force per unit area put amongst the Muslim and other immigrant communities to intermix in and assist America construct its net income. Meanwhile after their difficult work they are cast aside due to the American Governments flawed foreign policy and errors they have made by providing arms for their secret dockets. Hamid does qualify this subtle and underhand side of the American authorities through the anon. American that Changez speaks to through out the novel.
Hamid intentionally writes this in 2nd individual in order to demo that America is ever up to something and ever has multiple dockets but says nil of them. Hamid includes this besides to demo that it is close impossible to belong or to American if you’re an immigrant because there is ever a new marginalized group in America and they are capable to the Governments docket and besides effects of actions of the Government done in secret across seas in foreign lands. I believe Hamid’s novel is claiming that in order to be American you have to give your civilization of beginning and embrace American civilization of blending in and remaining under the radio detection and ranging. But he is besides stating that in making so you allow yourself to be brainwashed and blinded by false ideals of money and power and finally to non be taken advantage of the system you have to be cognizant of the system merely as Changez knows the actions of the anon. American.