HellHeaven by Jhumpa Lahiri

Jhumpa Lahiri in her book Hell-Heaven explores geographies of intimacy and the manner in which various spaces control intimacies, re-form intergenerational intimacies and disrupt traditional narratives of intimacy. The author specifically focuses on second-generation immigrants of Bengali, detailing the unique challenges or experiences they encounter from a banished sense of the “familiar” intimacy of their motherland and the similar narratives of advances with which their fathers struggled. The woman in this short story is fundamentally responsible for depicting the boundaries of the old and new geographies of intimacy. This is a story that looks at simple human emotions like loneliness, jealousy, love and describes how various individuals change drastically over time due to geographical. The title is taken from this paragraph from the story Hell-Heaven: “’He used to be so different. I don’t understand how a person can change so suddenly it’s just hell-heaven” (p, 112). In Hell-Heaven, Pranab Chakraborty is an MIT graduate student, Boston is considering returning to his motherland in Calcutta because of being homesickness. Through this thought, one can argue that despite the many privileges that these individuals in the Diaspora may have, more often than not they always are faced with feelings of not belonging.
While on Boston streets, Pranab Chakraborty notices her traditional Bengali mother Aparna and a young girl and. While following them, and he ends up befriending them but only to be shocked that they too are likewise homesick. Pranab Kaku (uncle) now is a regular visitor at Usha’s house. He referred to Aparna as "Boudi" (body implies an elder brother’s wife). Over time Aparna anticipating to Pranab’s visits and develops a unique kind of love towards him. Later Aparna’s love for Pranab apparently turns into jealousy. This was seen when he brings an American woman called Deborah home, whom he eventually marries.