Significance of Family in Leila Aboulela's 'Something Old Something New' and Ridjal Noor's 'Anil'
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Family in Something Old, Something New and Anil
In the two works, Something Old, Something New by Leila Aboulela and Anil by Ridjal Noor family plays an exceptionally important role, each demonstrates the tug between the desire to rely on and be true to the family and at the same time the desire to reject those things about family which are difficult to understand and love. In Anil the young child is both drawn to his mother and father as his protectors and afraid of them at the same time. He does not understand how they live, his father who is juxtaposed between an ever soft-spoken servant to a great man and a tyrant to Anil and his mother at home and his mother who is ever present and ever not present, the shadow of an abused woman. While In Something Old, Something New the main character is drawn away from his birth family and his culture by a conversion to Islam and roughly embraced by a family in Sudan whose daughter he wishes to marry. Each work is an exploration of a pinnacle moment when the life of the character changes and the old reliance on family and what is known becomes a challenging realization of having to embrace the unknown.
Each of these characters are developing individually to reject and grow away from family one reluctantly as a crying child (Anil) driven away from his family by the witnessing of a crime and the other an unnamed man from Scotland who converts to Islam by choice and then falls in love with a Sudanese waitress. In Anil the child is