Layered Temporalities - Between Modernism and Postmodernism - in Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowland

Keywords: Circular time, Egoism, Linear time, Modernity, Postmodernism


The discussion approaches Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel The Lowland, aiming to trace the author’s positioning in relation to modern and postmodern assumptions. The argument follows the main character’s (Gauri) transnational trajectory, as she crosses frontiers in a journey that also spans large temporal dimensions. Gauri’s unconventional choices are to be interpreted in relation with her permanent interest in the nature of time that is also a part of her doctoral research in philosophy. Gauri’s professional goals and her personal destiny appear strongly conditioned by the political context of her pre-emigration days, i.e. the Naxalite movement. All the above suggest that The Lowland can be read as a novel with an implied message about the grand narrative of history in relation to time perception and the possibility of (female) identity formation. Whether Lahiri’s approach to these themes echoes a predominantly (post)modern outlook is the focus of the present analysis.

Author Biography

Adriana-Elena Stoican, Bucharest University of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania

Adriana-Elena Stoican received her Ph.D. in Literary and Cultural Studies from the University of Bucharest, Romania. She currently teaches English for Business Communication at the Bucharest University of Economic Studies. Her research interests include Indian diasporic fiction in English, comparative literature, South Asian American literature, postcolonial studies.


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How to Cite
Stoican, A.-E. (2020). Layered Temporalities - Between Modernism and Postmodernism - in Jhumpa Lahiri’s The Lowland. English Studies at NBU, 6(2), 249-264.