The Complexities of Alienation, Otherness, and Marginalization in Miral Al-Tahawy’s Novel Brooklyn Heights (Published)
This paper is an attempt to bind the reader to the complexities of otherness and marginalization as trauma experienced by the protagonist and other immigrants in the America depicted in Brooklyn Heights[i]. In all of their complexities and nuances that this paper seeks to explore and discuss these concepts, otherness, alienation, and marginalization, in light of Homi Bhahba’s concept of otherness and Daphne Grace’s theorization on the geographical senses of ‘belonging’ or ‘dislocation’. As such, since Al-Tahawy’s narrative focuses on spaces of otherness and marginalization, this paper aims to reveal how the novelist tends towards the deeply personal, and creates interesting transnational connections through a wide cast of multi-racial immigrants and refugees. The paper further exposes how Al-Tahawy, through her compelling and masterful style, captures the confusions and conflicts of marginalized immigrants and how otherness and marginalization, as experiences of social and psychological disjunction, lead to cultural alienation in America; how attempts at assimilation in a new host country even further highlight the sense of loss and alienation, especially if the immigration from the original home country takes as a result of a traumatic event; and whether or not assimilation necessarily nullifies one’s ethnicity or means total disappearance or “dissolving” into the mainstream.
Citation: Farouq Rezq Bekhit Sayyid (2022) The Complexities of Alienation, Otherness, and Marginalization in Miral Al-Tahawy’s Novel Brooklyn Heights, European Journal of English Language and Literature Studies, Vol.10, No.3, pp.1-15