Gogol and Maxine's and Henry and Lelia's relationships are both formed by fascinations to each other's mysterious backgrounds, however, beyond initial attraction, the couples realize that the exotic attractiveness in their partners create cultural rifts in their relationships, and how they deal with lost identities, the devotion they have with their families, and how they redefine themselves ultimately decide the futures of the couples. i. initial attraction. Beyond physical appearance, the initial attraction that draws Maxine/Gogol and Henry/ Lelia is their difference in culture. NAMESAKE: “they speak in that slightly strained, silly way that he associates now with flirtation—the exchange feels desperately arbitrary, fleeting” (129). “he is curious about her, attracted, flattered by the boldness of her pursuit” (130) NATIVE SPEAKER: “i was immediately drawn to her. I liked the way she moved. ..i noticed how closely i was listening to her” (10) Lelia ii. love of each other's family: “he falls in love with Maxine, the house, and Gerald and Lydia's manner of living”(137) maxines parents: “i enjoyed meeting them. They're charming” (135) “...here at Maxine's side, in this cloistered wilderness, he is free”
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