Theme and message

The main theme of the short story is that of cultural identity and external pressures. Amanthi Harris explores this theme by following a young woman living in Britain whose mother is originally from Sri Lanka. The story centres on the relationship between the mother who wants to follow the traditions of her native country and her daughter who wants to independence from her mother's pressures. Family dynamics, immigration issues, and wedding traditions bring the focus on the theme of cultural identity.

Cultural identity and external pressures

The theme of cultural identity is explored through the plot, setting, and characters. The beginning of the story suggests the main character is conflicted about her identity because of her traditional mother’s pressures. The daughter wants to have a typical Western wedding, yet her mother wants her to wear a traditional wedding sari from their native country, Sri Lanka.

The character is first influenced by her domineering mother and agrees to try on some saris. The mother and the people in the Asian shopping area of the city become symbolic of immigrants who preserve their cultural identity even though they live in another country. The mother not only preserves her traditions but also rejects Westerners as indicated b...

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