Brick lane

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Brick Lane


This document is composed of a text and a photo picturing its author. The text is an extract from a novel entitled Brick Lane which was written by Monica Ali and published in 2003. It was named after Brick Lane, a street at the heart of London's Bangladeshi community. It follows the life of Nazneen, a Bangladeshi woman who moves to Tower Hamlets in London at theage of 18 (her English consisting of "sorry" and "thank you") to marry an older man, Chanu, described by The Observer as "one of the novel's foremost miracles: twice her age, with a face like a frog, a tendency to quote Hume and the boundless doomed optimism of the self-improvement junkie, he is both exasperating and, to the reader at least, enormously loveable."
This passage, which is mainlycaracterized by conversations, deals with an immigrant to England called Chanu, who wanted to take his family to visit London before leaving it for good.


Even though we haven't got any specific indication, we know that the scene takes place in the early 21th century in a neighborhood of London. More precisely, « on a hot saturday morning towards the end of July » line 11.
The maincharacter is a man, called Chanu, who leave in London for twenty or thirty years. We know he is an immigrant. We can't assume his age just considering the text but he might probably be over 60 (« thirty or so years after he arrived in London » line 1 and « I've spent more than half my life here » line 12). The other four caracters are the members of his family, called Nazneen, Shahana and Bibi and abus conductor. In the passage, he wanted, as he decided to leave England, to take his family to see museums in London. They went on a bus with a big lunch. As he tought the bus knows, he asked the conductor which tourist attraction to visit. Instead of answering, the man asked him where he was from and Chanu admitted he actually lives in London.
This exerpt could be divided into three parts :first, from the beginning to line 10, the growth, the planning and the preparation of the tour. Then, lines 11 to 28, refers to the progress of the daytime and finally, line 29 to the end, the dialogue with the bus driver.


In the one hand, Chanu is organised. We ca suggest he planned this day out for a long time and he had provided everything he might need. Line 4 to 10, he broughtthe full equipement of a good tourist and what's more, « he made a list of tourist attractions » line 9. However, as he had never been a real tourist, we can find useless things among his accessories such as a compass. The author must have willingly amphasized this moment.
In an other hand, Chanu is very enthusiastic. We can pick up his talk line 21 « I like this » and his behaviour line 25« Chanu began to hum. He danced with his head... ». All this signs make us sure he had waited all along his life to spend such a moment. Affected by the same feelings, Nazneen is supportive and caring. Moreover, she wanted to please Chanu « Nazneen decided she would make this day unlike any other. She would not allow this day to dissapoint him » lines 27-28. Nonetheless, although we don't know why, wecan suppose Shahana is not in good mood by the way she speaks to Nazneen ; « You'll stink the bus out, Sahana had said » line 18. She might not be happy lo leave definitly England.
To make this day unforgettable and not to go wrong in his choices, Chanu would like to ask a Londoner's point of vue (« It would be good to take an opinion from a local » line 39). As a consequence, he adressed thebus conductor. Unfortunately, the driver was unpleasant and uncooperative (« The conductor stared at Chanu, as if considering whether to eject him from the bus. » lines 36-37). He might react like this because hated foreign tourists.
Now, we are going to focus on immigration. Bengladesh was an english colony in the 20th century that could be why Chanu and Nazneen chose England to emigrate. I...
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