This miniseries is another high-quality BBC product with a clear social message. In it we see the dream of the multicultural society played out. The story evolves around two families, one Jewish and the other Indian Muslim, and follows a classical thesis - antithesis- synthesis pattern. At school the talented son of the Jewish family, owners of a textile works, meets the equally gifted daughter of the Muslim family, the mother of whom is an employee of the aforementioned textile enterprise.
The plot involves the deepening love between the two protagonists against a background of cultural differences, industrial conflict and social tensions. The Jewish boy is thoroughly liberal, while the Muslim girl is determined to stick to her traditions, both try in vain to escape from their mutual attraction into other relationships, but the end of the series sees the two families setting up shop together with plenty of promises for the future.
The message of the series is that despite differences and mutual prejudices the multicultural society can work and even a conflict as bitter as the Jewish-Muslim one can be overcome by love and understanding, respect and reason. The Western society is portrayed as giving all an equal chance at success even if certain racist elements of the white community pose a threat.
A lot has happened since 1989; compare this series with the miniseries White Teeth (2002) based on the novel by Zadie Smith and the writing on the wall can be clearly seen.
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