English 2230 WB: World Literature
Essay 1 (Lahiri, The Namesake)
Select one of the two topics below and write a three, full-page essay. Support your discussion with at least two quotations (or paraphrase) from the primary source (novel itself). NO material from secondary sources may be used for this assignment!
In the second part of the novel, Lahiri describes Gogol/Nikhil as a successful architect working for a midtown firm in New York City. He prefers “the place his parents do not know well, whose beauty they are blind to … and [also] fear.” Examine the differences between Gogol and his parents. Are they a reflection of his cultural assimilation? A reaction against his cultural hybridity? Something else?
Both Gogol and Sonia, his sister, are examples of hybrid identities (American by birth/Indian by heritage). Considering that American culture encourages individualism and freedom, while Indian culture – being rooted in tradition – stresses conformity, can Gogol and Sonia reconcile the two? Is this even possible? (You can make brief reference to your own hybrid experience, if you relate, but the focus must remain on the novel and characters).
Due date: November 5th (midnight).
Format: MLA.
Submit in word file, not pdf.
Worth mentioning: substandard writing is not accepted in ENG 2230 WB. Do NOT submit your essay for evaluation without consulting, point by point, the 15-Steps-to-Writing Checklist to ensure that your document meets basic writing standards. Also, review the MLA sample essay to see how your document should look on paper. These materials are posted in “Module 1.” If you already know that your writing proficiency is not at skill-level, please reach out to the Writing Center, ahead of time, for individualized support. Points will be deducted from the “Academic Professionalism” component of the course, each time the instructions above are not followed. Most importantly: please meet the required deadline. Late papers are not accepted, resulting in a zero grade. Thank you for your cooperation!

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