Essay about Imagining Homelands

1480 Words Oct 21st, 2011 6 Pages
How long does it take for one to become an American citizen? A majority of America’s population has emigrated from various parts of the world for many different reasons. Some immigrants adapt instantly, while others take years. Some may never adapt and never feel at home in the new country that they are living in. In the essay Imagining Homelands by Bharati Mukherjee, the author suggests that that an immigrant is either like her sister, someone who religiously retains her ethnicity, or like Mukherjee, who changes what is necessary to adapt to her new environment. Her sister keeps her roots while Mukherjee loses hers. Upon moving to America, Mukherjee changes the way she dresses because her sari, traditional Indian attire for women, is …show more content…
She claims that each person has their own story and reason as to why he or she chose to depart from their home country. With this in mind, it shows that all immigrants come from a variety of backgrounds and all walks of life. This wide range of people is what makes immigration unique. A big part of immigration is the struggle or excitement that comes along with it. Mukherjee makes an effort to show that immigration can be a positive or negative experience. For many it can be considered a very difficult time while for others it can be considered quite fascinating. She explains the struggle and how many people misinterpret immigration, “The national myth of immigration, the heart warming saga of babushka-clad refugees climbing to the deck of the tramp steamer for a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty…an image out of aging newspapers or out collective pop-memory banks” (217). To many people, immigration is considered a major hardship. According to Mukherjee, many people are exiled which means that the person immigrating is often left with no choice but to move to a new country (218). She describes exile as “reminders of suffering” (218). She continues on stating that it is tough for these people who have no longer have a choice, are forced to pack their belongings and are shipped off to a new country with no familiarity. However, she makes it a point that this process is not considered a struggle for all. For people like the author, it may have been a little

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