Seeing the shadows within

From The Hindu:

Hamid_2 Mohsin Hamid on the reasons why he chose to write The Reluctant Fundamentalist as a dramatic monologue and leave it deliberately polemical.

The Reluctant Fundamentalist is not a pretty book. No, there is no violence but there is a certain stealth in its telling. That requires guts and a tremendous insight into a difficult situation. Hamid seems to have both and has employed his technique to perfection. 9/11 change d many things for many people. To quote Hamid, “I wanted to explore in fiction my own growing desire to leave (America). It was confusing territory for me, because I loved and still love so much about America and yet was still uncertain about staying on.” The book mirrors this. Excerpts:

The transformation of Changez is almost insidious. On one level it seems related to the larger issue and on another with his not-happening relationship with Erica.

I think that the personal and political are always intertwined. And in Changez’s case, there is the political narrative about what he’s feeling about the world alongside the personal narrative of what’s happening with Erica and he has inside him these fissures, he has this mix of being a very insecure person but a very proud person. He has this affair with this woman Erica and if it had worked out perhaps things would have been different for him. I think all of that mix is what makes his story.

More here.