Taniya Weldon

Professor Ramos


March 1, 2019

The Perspective of an Immigration

Mohsin Hamid novel Exit West confronts the issues on immigration, he gives us a glimpse on why and how immigrants make the decision to migrate. Immigration is an action of coming to live permanently in a foreign country. Since the beginning of time people immigrated to different lands, America for example is a place their people migrated to. Back then it was not really a problem until they started finding ways to keep out the people and families that needed desperately to move from seeing death, violence and destruction in their country every day. As people we should empaths with immigrants, we should not be fouled about what we hear about immigrants we should form are own opinions by looking from there perspective.

We need to understand what immigrants go through, to imagine ourselves in that position, to see in the perspective of an immigrate. The struggle they had overcome with living in multiple war zone full of violence and destruction, seeing death all around them, days staying inside to avoid all the chaos with basically no food is beyond hard. Just as Saeed and Nadia were hanging out with one other, they come across devasting scene. As the militants secured the city, extinguishing the last large salients of resistance, a partial calm descended, broken by the activities of drones and aircrafts that bombed from the heavens, these networked machines for the most part invisible, and by the public and private executions that now took place almost continuously, bodies hanging from streetlamps and billboards like a form of festive seasonal decoration (Hamid 86).” Around the time Nadia moves into Saeed’s house with his father they had to rearrange furniture to avoid getting hit by shrapnel, and on those cold nights with no gas, electricity, spending countless hours inside to avoid the dangers of what’s happening outside. People avoiding the “doors” that soldiers patrolled to find “agents” to smuggle them and their families out of countries that they once called home are too dangerous now. Endless worry about the possibilities of being raped or killed having possessions stolen were running through there heads. Seeing the death and violence all around them they see no future in their country only death. There is a crisis happening and they are risking humans’ lives, why? They need support to help them get back on their feet. People should question their humanity, who are you, put yourself in the immigrates shoes because if it was any one-off us (people that are living comfortably in are beds at night, comfortably walking down the street, not at risk of getting shot in the head by a stray bullet, etc.), we would want the support one other so that they don’t have to lose someone they care deeply about through some kind of tragedy.

During the time when Nadia and Saeed were ready to leave their country with Saeed’s father Saeed’s father let Saeed know that he was not coming. Saeed’s father wanted his son to go, when he decides to stay in his country and told Saeed to leave without him. To journey on in find of a better life, a better future. Saeed’s father said he was staying where he was because even though his wife died, his wife was there in spirit and he did not want to leave her, but also he said he was thinking of the future, even though he did not say this to Saeed, for he feared that if he said  this to his son that his son might not go, and he knew above all else that his must go (Hamid 96). He knew he was too old to see a better future, but he knew Saeed and Nadia would. Throughout time immigration has being happening in the world and in recent decades it had been denied and unwelcomed. How can we deny immigrants when “We are all migrants through time (Hamid 209)?” It is appalling to me that people make immigration sound disgusting and dangerous at the exact same time. Why? There are so many questions not being asked to get immigration the right attention it deserves. Who gives us the right to deny citizenship to those people who live and go through things many people don’t see in a lifetime? Is it that big of an issue to find ways to let immigrates stay temporarily in a stable country until there country is back to being stable? Denying immigrates the right to hope, dream and find and fight for a better future for themselves. Living in a place where there is no hope for the future, to lie and wait for death is a horrible punishment that no one should have to go through. We the people who are living comfortably are denying there hopes that into are affecting the hope we want to see in the future.

Many tragedies that involved deaths happened throughout the novel. Luckily, as Nadia and Saeed travel from place to place to in search of a better place to start a new life, they avoided death from militant soldiers, local natives, and travel. They went through some hard times but, not everyone was so lucky. A few years back Barbara Miltner talks about how a catastrophic event that should not have happened, this event could have been prevented if we open are arms to immigrates around the world. Milter writes “In April 2015, two devasting events catalyzed a swift European response to the Mediterranean crisis, On 15 April, some 400 migrants drowned when their vessel capsized. Five days later, another 700 individuals perished in a second capsizing when a vessel overturned in Libyan waters overnight. Within days, EU leaders called an emergency summit of the European Council, the highest level of political cooperation in Europe. What resulted were a series of commitments to strengthen the European response to the migration crisis (Miltner).” How can we effect change in America if we are not helping and showing support to people in need of assistance? When we deny citizenship, we will continue to hear about tragedies that accrued in Exit West and the Mediterranean because of people’s determination to fight for a better life in hope they make it where they want to be. This issue is real and nothing happening while people are dying by the hundreds.

When it comes to immigrants make up your own mind, do not be tricked into thinking that immigrants come to seek a better life, future for themselves and their families, to get away for the dangers that are accruing back in their own lands. The author opens eyes to see the perspective of what immigrates go through. Leaving people behind, traveling and living poorly, experiencing violence, destruction and death. There are many tragedies that happen in an immigrant life and as they move destination to destination there only seeking a safe space to have a future in. Put yourself in their shoes and wonder if you would hope for the help that seems lacking currently, hope for a better future rather than sitting and waiting for death to come knocking. 

Works Cited

Miltner, Barbara. “The Mediterannean Migration Crisis: A Clash of the Titans Obligations.”Brown Journal of World Affairs, vol.22, issue 1, fall/winter 2015, p213-237. 25p. Academic Search Complete, http://web.a.ebscohost.com.chaffey.idm.oclc.org/ehost/detail/detail?vid=6&sid=0382ef37-56e6-4670-8165-a45c73f10017%40sessionmgr4006&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#AN=114516790&db=a9h