Brick Lane Chapters 7-9 Summary & Analysis

Monica Ali

Brick Lane

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Brick Lane Chapters 7-9 Summary & Analysis

Chapter 7 Summary

This chapter consists entirely of letters from Hasina about her fate as a single woman pursued because of her beauty. During the course of this one-way correspondence about the ups and downs of her life in which she insists on flaunting the Muslim codes restricting women, we learn that Nazneen now has two healthy daughters.

Hasina’s letter about the strike in her garment factory mirrors Chanu’s unemployed status. Six months later, Hasina reveals she has lost her job due to her friendship with a man that appeared lewd and jeopardized the reputation of the factory. In the next letter, Mr. Chowdhury comes to her rescue and in the following letter she reveals that he accused her of being a whore and raped her. She feels cursed, her words indicating she has succumbed to her fate and reveals for the first time awareness about her role in her downfall. In the next letter she is desperate, stating she has gone to every factory in Dhaka but cannot find a job.

In March 1995, Hasina writes that she has received a proposal of marriage. In the next letter, arriving a month later, Hasina is living with her husband and taking pride in being a good housekeeper. Her husband, Ahmed, works in a shoe factory. Two months later, she reveals that her husband has turned on her. A year later, Nazneen receives a letter that says Hasina is leaving her marriage. There is no letter until January 2001, which has the good news that she has been rescued from “the home of fallen women” to be a maid in a good house with kind employers. 

Chapter 8 Summary

In February 2001, Chanu and Nazneen are still living in Tower Hamlets in London raising their daughters, Bibi and Shahana. The girls have a physically abusive relationship with their father in the confines of the apartment, where the daily cycle is carried out in the same familiar space. And so this space also becomes one of the collusion of opposites: Chanu teaches his daughter to recite “The Golden Bengal” from their ancestral land, but takes out his…

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