11-07-16

Jhumpa Lahiri, Herman de Man, Helmut Krausser, Giuseppe Bonaviri, Henri Coulonges, Marjan Berk

 

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jhumpa Lahiri Vourvoulias werd geboren op 11 juli 1967 in Londen. Zie ook alle tags voor Jhumpa Lahiri op dit blog.

Uit: Unaccustomed Earth

“After her mother's death, Ruma's father retired from the pharmaceutical company where he had worked for many decades and began traveling in Europe, a continent he'd never seen. In the past year he had visited France, Holland, and most recently Italy. They were package tours, traveling in the company of strangers, riding by bus through the countryside, each meal and museum and hotel prearranged. He was gone for two, three, sometimes four weeks at a time. When he was away Ruma did not hear from him. Each time, she kept the printout of his flight information behind a magnet on the door of the refrigerator, and on the days he was scheduled to fly she watched the news, to make sure there hadn't been a plane crash anywhere in the world.
Occasionally a postcard would arrive in Seattle, where Ruma and Adam and their son Akash lived. The postcards showed the facades of churches, stone fountains, crowded piazzas, terra-cotta rooftops mellowed by late afternoon sun. Nearly fifteen years had passed since Ruma's only European adventure, a month-long EuroRail holiday she'd taken with two girlfriends after college, with money saved up from her salary as a para-legal. She'd slept in shabby pensions, practicing a frugality that was foreign to her at this stage of her life, buying nothing but variations of the same postcards her father sent now. Her father wrote succinct, impersonal accounts of the things he had seen and done: "Yesterday the Uffizi Gallery. Today a walk to the other side of the Arno. A trip to Siena scheduled tomorrow." Occasionally there was a sentence about the weather. But there was never a sense of her father's presence in those places. Ruma was reminded of the telegrams her parents used to send to their relatives long ago, after visiting Calcutta and safely arriving back in Pennsylvania.
The postcards were the first pieces of mail Ruma had received from her father. In her thirty-eight years he'd never had any reason to write to her. It was a one-sided correspondence; his trips were brief enough so that there was no time for Ruma to write back, and besides, he was not in a position to receive mail on his end. Her father's penmanship was small, precise, slightly feminine; her mother's had been a jumble of capital and lowercase, as though she'd learned to make only one version of each letter. The cards were addressed to Ruma; her father never included Adam's name, or mentioned Akash. It was only in his closing that he acknowledged any personal connection between them. "Be happy, love Baba," he signed them, as if the attainment of happiness were as simple as that.”

 

 
Jhumpa Lahiri (Londen, 11 juli 1967)

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11-07-15

Jhumpa Lahiri, Pai Hsien-yung, Herman de Man, Helmut Krausser, Giuseppe Bonaviri, Kurt Klinger, Henri Coulonges

 

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jhumpa Lahiri Vourvoulias werd geboren op 11 juli 1967 in Londen. Zie ook alle tags voor Jhumpa Lahiri op dit blog.

Uit: The Lowland

“Normally she stayed on the balcony, reading, or kept to an adjacent room as her brother and Udayan studied and smoked and drank cups of tea. Manash had befriended him at Calcutta University, where they were both graduate students in the physics department. Much of the time their books on the behaviors of liquids and gases would sit ignored as they talked about the repercussions of Naxalbari, and commented on the day’s events.
The discussions strayed to the insurgencies in Indochina and in Latin American countries. In the case of Cuba it wasn’t even a mass movement, Udayan pointed out. Just a small group, attacking the right targets.
All over the world students were gaining momentum, standing up to exploitative systems. It was another example of Newton’s second law of motion, he joked. Force equals mass times acceleration.
Manash was skeptical. What could they, urban students, claim to know about peasant life?
Nothing, Udayan said. We need to learn from them.
Through an open doorway she saw him. Tall but slight of build, twenty-three but looking a bit older. His clothing hung on him loosely. He wore kurtas but also European-style shirts, irreverently, the top portion unbuttoned, the bottom untucked, the sleeves rolled back past the elbow.
He sat in the room where they listened to the radio. On the bed that served as a sofa where, at night, Gauri slept. His arms were lean, his fingers too long for the small porcelain cups of tea her family served him, which he drained in just a few gulps. His hair was wavy, the brows thick, the eyes languid and dark.
His hands seemed an extension of his voice, always in motion, embellishing the things he said. Even as he argued he smiled easily. His upper teeth overlapped slightly, as if there were one too many of them. From the beginning, the attraction was there.”

 

 
Jhumpa Lahiri (Londen, 11 juli 1967)

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11-07-14

Jhumpa Lahiri

 

De Amerikaanse schrijfster Jhumpa Lahiri Vourvoulias werd geboren op 11 juli 1967 in Londen als dochter van Bengaalse ouders en haar de burgerlijke naam is Nilanjana Sudeshna Lahiri , maar zij kreeg de koosnaam Jhumpa. Ze groeide op in Zuid-Kingstown, Rhode Island. In 1989 studeerde ze af met een BA in Engelse literatuur aan het Barnard College; aan de Boston University, behaalde zij daarna een MA in het Engels, Creatief Schrijven en Vergelijkende Literatuurwetenschap en een Ph. D. in Renaissance studies. Aan de Boston University en de Rhode Island School of Design, gaf zij ook les in creatief schrijven. Van 1997-1998 had zij een Fellow status Provincetown's Fine Arts Work Center. In 1999 werd haar debuut “Interpreter of Maladies“gepubliceerd. Het gaat in de collectie van negen korte verhalen over echtelijke problemen, miskraam en vervreemding onder Indiase immigranten in de VS van de eerste en tweede generatie. De verhalen spelen in het noordoosten van de Verenigde Staten en in India, vooral in Kolkata. Het boek won de Pulitzerprijs 2000 in de categorie Roman (Fictie). Haar vijfde boek “The Namesake” werd uitgebracht in 2003 en gaat over de fictieve familie Ganguli. De ouders komen allebei uit Kolkata en migreerden als jonge volwassenen naar de Verenigde Staten. Hun kinderen Gogol en Sonia groeiden er op. De uit het culturele conflict tussen ouders en kinderen voortvloeiende spanningen zijn thema van het boek. In 2007 werd het boek verfilmd. Lahiri heeft een cameo in de film. Sinds 2005 is Jhumpa Lahiri vice-voorzitter van het PEN American Center.

Uit: The Namesake

“On a sticky August evening two weeks before her due date, Ashima Ganguli stands in the kitchen of a Central Square apartment, combining Rice Krispies and Planters peanuts and chopped red onion in a bowl. She adds salt, lemon juice, thin slices of green chili pepper, wishing there were mustard oil to pour into the mix. Ashima has been consuming this concoction throughout her pregnancy, a humble approximation of the snack sold for pennies on Calcutta sidewalks and on railway platforms throughout India, spilling from newspaper cones. Even now that there is barely space inside her, it is the one thing she craves. Tasting from a cupped palm, she frowns; as usual, there’s something missing. She stares blankly at the pegboard behind the countertop where her cooking utensils hang, all slightly coated with grease. She wipes sweat from her face with the free end of her sari. Her swollen feet ache against speckled gray linoleum. Her pelvis aches from the baby’s weight. She opens a cupboard, the shelves lined with a grimy yellow-and-white-checkered paper she’s been meaning to replace, and reaches for another onion, frowning again as she pulls at its crisp magenta skin. A curious warmth floods her abdomen, followed by a tightening so severe she doubles over, gasping without sound, dropping the onion with a thud on the floor.
The sensation passes, only to be followed by a more enduring spasm of discomfort. In the bathroom she discovers, on her underpants, a solid streak of brownish blood. She calls out to her husband, Ashoke, a doctoral candidate in electrical engineering at MIT, who is studying in the bedroom. He leans over a card table; the edge of their bed, two twin mattresses pushed together under a red and purple batik spread, serves as his chair. When she calls out to Ashoke, she doesn’t say his name.
Ashima never thinks of her husband’s name when she thinks of her husband, even though she knows perfectly well what it is. She has adopted his surname but refuses, for propriety’s sake, to utter his first. It’s not the type of thing Bengali wives do. Like a kiss or caress in a Hindi movie, a husband’s name is something intimate and therefore unspoken, cleverly patched over."

 

 
Jhumpa Lahiri (Londen, 11 juli 1967)

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