Bharati Mukherjee 's Two Ways

1280 WordsMar 8, 20176 Pages
In Bharati Mukherjee’s “Two Ways to Belong in America,” she outlines how she and her sister, Mira, came to the United States from India to have a more privileged life while gaining their education and pursuing their dreams. As time went by, changes in immigration laws strickened and it took away benefits from resident aliens. They both realized that changing and becoming an American citizen was necessary in order to achieve the American dream they initially migrated for. Mukherjee (Bharati) was more open minded and she loved America, so she was more willing to stay in America and become a legal citizen. On the other hand, Mira was more reserved with her Indian culture and returning to her homeland, yet she wanted to stay temporarily in…show more content…
This is very significant because it just proves how much she is willing to sacrifice her identity just so she can accomplish her goals as an American citizen. Even so, Mukherjee was “opting for fluidity, self-invention, blue jeans, and Tshirts, and renouncing 3,000 years of cate-observant, ‘pure culture’ marriage in the Mukherjee family” (273). She embraces the American culture because she acquires conformity from it. Mukherjee’s love for America makes her more susceptible to adjust into America to the point where she does not even follow her own Indian tradition. This changes her identity negatively because the more she embraces the American lifestyle, the more she surrenders her Indian heritage. If she did allow herself to gain citizenship while maintaining her Indian culture, perhaps her identity would not be jeopardized, however it is. Mukherjee loses her identity as a traditional Indian since chose the American lifestyle over her own, and hence this reveals the trauma of self-transformation that results from sacrificing one’s identity. As opposed to Mukherjee, Mira have no desire to become assimilated into the American society because she wanted to keep her Indianness and marry an Indian man. Initially, she was happy that she had a green card because it allows her to visit multiple areas in the world while maintaining her job that she so desires. It gave her more freedom because she was not obliged to America, considering she was not a
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