Change is the law of life. A person goes through different stages of life, and at every stage there is transformation in the personality of the person. This new individual is entirely different from the previous one. For this change, different circumstances and events are responsible. Alice Walker’s The Color Purple and Monica Ali’s Brick Lane are two texts of feminism in which we find the theme of evolution among the life of the characters like Celie and Nazneen who, happened to highlight the oppression of women in universal phenomenon irrespective of caste, creed, culture and nation. My paper is an attempt to study these two characters and see how their personality is evolved because of the different circumstances of life.
Nazneen and Celie both belong to different culture, religion and nation, but they both are women, the weaker sex. They both belong to that gender which is always identified with the man. Therefore, they both are identified by their respective husband Chanu and Albert. Clara Nubile writes: “In childhood a women should be under her father’s control, in youth under her husband’s and when her husband is dead under her sons. She should not have independence” (1).
Nazneen, who is just sixteen years old is married to Chanu aged forty years. It a case of mismatch marriage. This decision is taken by her father after her elder sister Hasina elopes with nephew of the saw mill owner. As passivity is expected from young girls at the time of marriage, Nazneen accepts this match made by her father. There is no resistance on her part. She reaches England with her husband. Here she has everything. She has well- furnished house, food to eat and above all an educated husband. A husband who is the identity of a women. Monica Ali writes in her book: “Its lucky for you that you married an educated man. That was a stroke of luck”(39). By reminding Nazneen of this fact of an educated husband Chanu very cleverly suppresses her. He always boasts of himself. She is alone here. There is no one to share her feelings. Chanu on the other hand shares his experiences with her, but does not listen to her thoughts. Therefore, her thoughts keep returning to Gouripur. But somehow she gives consolation to herself by seeing such good furniture in her house. Ali writes ,“nobody in Gouripur had anything like it. He had made good marriage for her”(12).
Nazneen’s age is sixteen years. She is not very mature. She is not able to identify the hidden patriarchal face of Chanu. She is hurt after listening such comments from her husband such as “she is an unspoilt girl from village”(14). She is not able to understand the deeper meaning of these remarks. But she is pained and feels sad. Men always want woman to be a good worker. Chanu is satisfied that she is a good worker. She cuts his corn. She cooks, cleans and looks after house. Their relationship is mechanical and not passionate. It is indoctrinated to her from childhood that women should be obedient to their...