by Jhumpa Lahiri
Character Role Analysis
Without Gogol's realizing it, Ashoke has provided plenty of guidance to his son, just in his own, quiet, reserved way. When he tells Gogol the story of his train accident, he's showing his son the importance of perseverance in tragedy. And when he gives his son the book of Gogol's short stories, he's providing Gogol a key to understanding his namesake and himself. Too bad Gogol waits so long to crack the spine.