The Transcendental Signifier in The Reluctant Fundamentalist


  • Mudasser Khalid NUML
  • Khurram Shahzad NUML



A person's life is governed by a primary source that serves as a guiding beacon on day-to-day affairs, both short-term and long-term. An anchor is needed to keep a person's life in a particular direction. This anchor, the Transcendental Significant, gives meaning to the events of a person's life and shapes the identity and the consequent perceptions and motives of a person's life. This investigation is an attempt to discover the transcendental signifier that dominates and governs the life of Changez, the protagonist of Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist, who makes his association with a native or foreign land secondary. This research follows a qualitative research model; within which he uses the descriptive approach as a means of exploring the Transcendental Significant. For content analysis, the research uses Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory as a theoretical framework.



Author Biographies

Mudasser Khalid, NUML



Khurram Shahzad, NUML




Calcagno, A. (2009). Foucault and Derrida: The question of empowering and disempowering the author. Human Studies. 32(1), 33-51.

Derrida, J. (1989). This strange institution called literature. In D. Attridge (Ed.). Act of literature (pp. 35-39). New York & London: Routledge.

Derrida, J. (1974). Of Grammatology (Spivak, G. C. Trans.). Baltimore, MD & London: The Johns Hopkins University Press.

Derrida, J. (1959). Genesis, structure and phenomenology in writing and difference. The Hague: Morton.

Glendinning, S & Eaglestone, R. (2008). Derrida’s legacies: Literature and philosophy. New York: Routledge.

Hamid, M. (2013). The reluctant fundamentalist. Harcourt, Inc.: Orlando, Florida.

Maslow, A. H. (1943). A theory of human motivation. Psychological Review, 50(4), 370–96.

Roffe, J and Reynolds, J. (2004). Understanding Derrida. London: York Road.

Royle, N. (2003). Jacques Derrida. London & New York: Routledge.

Saussure, F. de (1916 [trans. 1959]). Course in general linguistics. New York: New York Philosophical Library.



How to Cite

Mudasser Khalid, & Khurram Shahzad. (2019). The Transcendental Signifier in The Reluctant Fundamentalist. Erevna: Journal of Linguistics and Literature, 3(2), 30-41. Retrieved from