Brick Lane Essay Topics

Monica Ali

Brick Lane

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Brick Lane Essay Topics

  1. What does the iron fist in Rupban’s belly while going into labor with Nazneen have to do with her daughter’s character and upbringing? Why was Nazneen left to fend for herself after being born? What approach did Nazneen take with her own baby boy when he got sick? What conflict did that cause in her later?
  1. What makes the two sisters, Nazneen and Hasina, different from one another? List and compare their character traits. What is it in their characters that led to such different paths to marriage? Compare and contrast the joys and regrets they have in their differing paths to love.
  1. What is the secret that Hasina has been withholding from Nazneen? Why does she decide reveal this secret? What was the relationship with charity that Hasinawent through in order to gain insight about the power of secrets?
  1. The symbol of the “fallen woman” is powerful in this novel. How does this symbol originate for the two sisters? When does it appear again for Nazneen after she married and moves to London? How does the symbol become real in Hasina’s life? Why does Nazneen get lost in London after receiving her sister’s letter about becoming homeless? What does she learn from this experience?
  1. Fate is the strongest theme in the book as it opens the narrative and sets the protagonist on the path of overcoming several obstacles in an arranged marriage to become an autonomous being. What does Nazneen’s mother teach her about fate? How does Nazneen overcome her fate as a dependent woman in an arranged marriage to become an autonomous woman?
  1. The lives of Muslim immigrants in London are starkly portrayed in this novel. What in general are the living conditions of these Muslim families? How do the different characters approach their circumstances? How do they try to better themselves? What are the different ways that Razia and Nazneen attempt to free themselves of their circumstances as Muslim women?
  1. The novel’s plot mostly unfolds during 2001, with growing tension in the Muslim community. What is the effect of the destruction of the World Trade Center?…
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