Monday, February 27, 2012


My Son the Fanatic
It’s a story written by Hanif Kureishi about a boy Parvez who was born in Lahore, Pakistan, and as a child was asked to study the Holy Scriptures through a Maulvi. When the Maulvi session starts his sermon, Parvez would fall asleep, this lead to the Maulvi devising a unique punishment, which ultimately compelled Parvez to stop attending. When he grew up, his marriage was arranged with Minoo and they immigrated to a small town in Britain, where Parvez started to make a living driving a taxi, and found he free from all religious activity. 25 years later, Parvez turns into a alcoholic person and, still driving a cab, while people who had immigrated after him have their own businesses and are wealthier than him. Parvez now has a grown son, Farid and is to be engaged to Madeleine Fingerhut, who is the daughter of the local Chief Inspector. After the two families' meet, Farid has a sudden change of heart when he notices that the Chief Inspector detests his family, and it slowly dawns on him that he and his girlfriend are quite different, and he cannot be part of a culture that relies solely on filth, along with a mix of Caucasian and Jewish propaganda against Islam. He starts reciting the Holy Quran, and asks permission from his dad to invite some religious leaders from Pakistan, after receiving consent; they do arrive to live in Parvez's home after being invited. It is here that Parvez will find that Farid has broken off the forthcoming engagement with Ms. Fingerhut, and has become a born again Muslim. His wife, Minoo, has taken to wearing the Hizaab, remains in the kitchen all day, and is not even permitted to sup or dine with her family, while Parvez finds that he cannot even sleep in his bedroom. Things start to heat up when Farid finds out that his dad has been patronizing a prostitute by the name of Beltina, whose real name is Sandra, and he also notes that his dad is her pimp. Then he and his colleagues set about to cleanse this town of its prostitutes - leading to a confrontation between him and his dad - a confrontation that may split his family forever.
The gentle friendship between Parvez, a pathetic Pakistani taxi driver and Bettina, a young prostitute gradually develops into a deeper and more passionate relationship as Parvez's home life gradually crumbles. This is due to his son's, Fravid, gradual rejection of Western institutions and values and acceptance of Islamic Fundamentalism. More pressure is brought to bear by a German business man Schitz who makes continual use of both Parvez and Bettina in their professional capacities culminating in his demand for them to organize and to impress some local business colleagues. Everything comes to a head when Farvid and his group decide to rid the town of its corrupting influence and attack the local prostitutes trapping Parvez in the middle forcing him to decide just where his loyalties lies. At last the son says, who’s the fanatic is now.
NAME- Trishi Dua

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