IJLLL 2016 Vol.2(3): 100-103 ISSN: 2382-6282
DOI: 10.18178/IJLLL.2016.2.3.75

In The Light of What We Know: Issues of Politics and Exile

Shampa Iftakhar
Abstract—In the Light of What We Know is a big, ambitious, debut novel from Bangladeshi author Zia Haider Rahman. Rahman explores the story of two immigrants from very different class backgrounds. In the novel, we find an unnamed narrator. He is a banker from a privileged background .His grandfather was Pakistani ambassador to the US, and his parents are Oxford academics. Zafar, on the other hand, was born in Sylhet, a "corner of a corner"[1] of north-eastern Bangladesh. Their stories unfold from their conversation, and from Zafar's notebooks. The story gracefully and deftly explores the different issues such as entire nature of life, existence, love, belonging, math, free-will, politics, identity, quantum physics and so on. It also depicts a strong sense of homelessness of an immigrant who never gets back home. The story covers the most significant events of different countries i.e. Liberation War of Bangladesh, issues of 9/11, condition of Afghanistan, etc. In a strict sense, Rahman's In the Light of What We Know is not a political one. Even he addresses and explores these political issues to put forward very critical issues of politics from 1971 to 2011. The narrator's friend never gets a home in abroad. England never welcomes him. He is exiled from root. He feels anger within himself for this exile. This paper aims to focus on particularly of these two issues politics and exile that we find in the novel, In The Light of What We know.

Index Terms—Anger, immigrants, sense of homelessness, 9/11, The Liberation War of Bangladesh.

Shampa Iftakhar is with the Daffodil International University, Bangladesh (e-mail: shampa.eng@daffodilvarsity.edu.bd).

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Cite:Shampa Iftakhar, "In The Light of What We Know: Issues of Politics and Exile," International Journal of Languages, Literature and Linguistics vol. 2, no. 3, pp. 100-103, 2016.

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