Books like “Interpreter of Maladies” and “The Namesake” have always been widely appreciated by the masses. The woman behind those wonderful words is Jhumpa Lahiri, a critically acclaimed author.
Jhumpa Lahiri or Nilanjana Sudeshna “Jhumpa” Lahiri, is an American author who has published numerous short stories and novels all in English. But recently she has started to translate her work in Italian. Some of her famous works are Interpreter of Maladies, The Namesake, The Lowland and Unaccustomed Earth.
Lahiri’s debut book was a collection of short stories Interpreter of Maladies (1999) which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. And her first novel The Namesake (2003) was adapted into a movie with the same name. Her second short-story collection Unaccustomed Earth (2008) won the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, whereas her second novel The Lowland (2013) was a finalist for the Man Booker Prize as well as the National Book Award for Fiction.
In her own personal achievements, Lahiri has won National Humanities Award; and she is a professor of creative writing at Princeton University.
We can draw some main characteristics in Lahiri’s writing. Her writings mainly use a plain language, something that is understood by any age group even though the problem or theme is related to one generation or age-group. The main thing that is commonly seen in her workings is that the characters are mostly Indian Immigrants to America, something that she draws parallels to her own life with. These characters are frequently people who have to struggle through adjusting to new values and customs of America, which are very distinct from their homeland. The characters that are drawn in Lahiri’s books are carefully drafted. We can say that she examines and writes a strong character with struggles, anxieties and the detailing towards immigrant psychology is worth the acclamation she gets.
Lahiri’s fiction can be said as autobiographical because it many a time draws up her personal experiences as well as those of her parents, friends and acquaintances from Bengali community which is familiar to her.