ESSENCE OF TRADITION AND CULTURE CONTINUITY IN SELECT NOVELS OF EASTERINE KIRE AND THOMAS KING
The paper examines the select novels of two ‘Native subject’ writers, of India and Canada. Easterine Kire and Thomas King are both evocative writers of cultural tradition and their novels carry an attractive voice on the cultural life of the native folks. Kire writes about the cultural landscape of Nagaland, a place and people that she knows well. Her novels provide rural setting that depicts the everyday life of ordinary natives. Likewise, in King’s, we find the cultural traditions of native community, specific of the ‘Blackfoot descent’. To Kire and King, reliance on writing is to promote indigenous cultural community and rediscover their own authentic native cultures in print.
Keywords: Cultural tradition, national culture, cultural community, oral tradition.
THE DYNAMICS OF MALE-FEMALE RELATIONSHIP IN ARUPA PATANGIA KALITA’S AYANANTA (DAWN)
Arupa Patangia Kalita, an eminent writer from the northeast voices concerns related to women issues in many of her short stories and novels. Her oeuvre encompasses various stages of feminist movement. Her travel from a revolutionary fireband feminist demanding equal rights and equal position for the second sex to a writer espousing the cause for women empowerment is an interesting contour of her writing career. In her novel Ayananta (Dawn), the work under present study she recapitulates her protagonist Bina’s inward journey, her reconciliation with her past and her acceptance of future responsibilities. Her determination to fight injustice meted to her gender springs from the strength of her inner self and is supported by inner strength of those who sometimes buckle under the pressure of male domination. This paper following the theory of gender politics studies the dynamics of male-female relationship present in the novel and poses questions and problematizes the issues of gender in the society.
Keywords: gender, male domination, feminine gaze, patriarchal traditions
CULTURAL TRANSITION IN CHINUA ACHEBE’S THINGS FALL APART AND NO LONGER AT EASE
Culture is the imperceptible bond which connects people together. It refers to the pattern of human activity which shapes our identity and helps build our character. However, if the culture is interrupted by certain forces, the society loses its self-determination and self-preservation. Chinua Achebe, in his novels, Things Fall Apart and No Longer at Ease, artistically shows how the once preserved traditional culture of Africa is intertwined and reformed into a modern culture, as a result of Western interruption.
Key Words: Culture, confusions, traditions, transition, western values
GENDER AND CULTURAL ISSUES IN KUNZANG CHODEN’S THE CIRCLE OF KARMA
Every community has a rich heritage, its own belief systems, customs, traditions, culture and practices. Literature has often been used as a vehicle to convey a country’s political, cultural, social and emotional attitudes. Enriched with a set of beliefs and customs, Bhutan has maintained its rich cultural practices without much influence from the outside world. The text taken for study identifies the practices and beliefs that the Buddhist society firmly holds onto and in the process stays alien to voice for their rights taking for granted that everything has occurred to them because of their own deeds. A close analysis of this work reveals a definite male bias that comes unnoticed in some of the Buddhist societies and the society at large. This paper gives a true picture of the conditions under which the people lived in Bhutan, which will further unleash the different follies prevalent in rural and modern societies. It will further help in the understanding of the belief system that has been maintained and followed till date firmly by the Buddhist society.
Key words: Buddhism, Gender Inequality, Karma, Culture, Pilgrimage, Religious beliefs.
MAJNUN : THE HERO OF COUNTLESS ROMANCES
Majnun, whose love ballad of Majnun-Layla evokes religious and emotional feelings is a trend setter in Arabic poetry. The ballad arising out of virgin love serves as myth evoking different layers of emotion. All the poems of Majnun are characterized by intensity of feelings like hopes, despairs etc. Purity of theme and use of technical terms derived from the Quaranic principles have made Majnun’s poetry more chaste. The paper aims to explore countless romances that Majnun’s poetry embodies.
Key-words: Romance, spiritual, Ghazal, eternal
WE WITCHES : A STUDY OF WITCH HUNTING AMONGST THE BODOS, SANTHALS AND RABHAS IN ASSAM
Witch hunting has taken a menacing form in Assam. Every year a sizeable number of people, both male and female, fall victim to this superstition. The practice of witch hunting is prevalent among the illiterates belonging to Bodos, Santhals, Rabhas, Mising and Tea-Tribe communities of Assam. This paper studies how among the Bodos the number of victims of witch hunting male and female – is almost same, among the Santhals and Rabhas percentage of female vicitims is more than the males.
Key words: witch-hunt, Santhals, Rabhas, Bodos.
MAYAMARA SECT OF ASSAM VAISHNAVISM AND ITS IMPACT ON THE SOCIETY OF UPPER ASSAM
The Mayamara Sect of Assam Vaishnavism originated from Sri Sri Aniruddhadeva (a prominent disciple of Sri Sri Gopaldeva) had a profound impact in evolving a new Mayamara or Matak Society in upper Assam. Following the instruction of his preceptor, Sri Sri Aniruddhadeva propagated the neo-Vaishnavite or Bhakti faith of Mahapurush Srimanta Sankaradeva among the vast populace of upper Assam, with his Satra institutions at Bishnu-Balikunchi and Nahar-Ati in present Lakhimpur district of the state. However, while propagating the faith among the tribal people he had to carefully formulate its principles with a view to honour their traditional spiritual sentiments. Such a liberal policy of the Saint and of the succeeding Adhikars of Mayamara Satras greatly popularized the faith and brought remarkable changes in every walk of socio-religious lives of the people of upper Assam.
Key words : Mayamara, Satra, Adhikar, Gosain, Samhati, Guru, Bhakata, Sarana.
TRAUMA OF GAY ISSUES IN ALAN HOLLINGHURST’S THE LINE OF BEAUTY
This paper examines on how the contemporary gay men’s life is reflected or represented in Allan Hollinghurst’s The Line of Beauty. The trauma faced by the homosexual as on how they fit in heterosexual world and the issues of their disapproval and exposure of negativity as a gay man conveying the ongoing stigma of homosexuality. Before analysing more deliberately on the main subject, brief information on the genre of gay novel has been examined. An introductory description about the author and his works on gay writing has been emphasized following which the theoretical perspectives on gay writing, the main issues of social and political aspects and the concerns of gender identity, class, sexuality and the AIDS epidemic in the novel have been critically examined.
Keywords: Gay genre, Queer Theory, Identity, Class and Sexuality, AIDS and Homosexuality.
CULTURAL DILEMMAS AND IDENTITY CRISIS IN JHUMPA LAHIRI’S THE NAMESAKE
This paper is an attempt to look into the dilemmas that the immigrants face from the perspective of the protagonist of Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel The Namesake. The Namesake reflects the great many problems which these diasporas face such as culture, language, name and identity. Here, we will analyze some of those issues from the viewpoint of Gogol, the protagonist who is also a child of an immigrant, just like the author Jhumpa Lahiri. Keywords: Diaspora, Culture, Language, Identity.
WOMANISM IN TONI MORRISON’S THE BLUEST EYE
Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye (1970) graphically depicts the effects of the legacy of nineteenth-century classical racism for poor black people in the United States. It explores the question of what it means to be an Afro-American in a racist capitalist white society. This discourse attempts to examine major characters’ ways of forming self-concept in the face of sexism and racism. It attempts to present how Claudia who follows womanist ideals manages to cope with the problems and eventually survives in contrast to those who defy such ideals and fail to survive.
Keywords : Feminism, Womanism, Black Feminism, Afro-American, Racism
SYLVIA PLATH’S THE BELL JAR : A PSYCHOANALYTICAL STUDY
The present study of The Bell Jar aims to explore the psychological aspects of the protagonist, Esther Greenwood’s life and the consequent mental breakdown. An analysis of her character includes her social life, career, and relationship with parents and the period under which she was institutionalized. The study presents significant reasons for her gradual mental breakdown. The oppressive role of society forms a hierarchal stratum where intelligent women like Plath and Greenwood become victims of social misfits. Two most prominent figures in psychological field, Sigmund Freud and Aaron T. Beck lend substantial theories which enable us to understand the abnormal manifestations as well as the psychological roots of the character’s problematic situation. The novel depicts Plath’s own disintegration by creating an alter ego through the character of Esther Greenwood, who is able to overcome and transcend social oppression while she escapes this bitter reality which is seen graphically in her eventual suicide.
Key words: Psychopathology, Schizophrenia, Tripartite Psyche, Psychoanalysis, Cognitive Model of Abnormal Psychology
EASTERINE KIRE’S A TERRIBLE MATRIARCHY: A FEMINIST STUDY
Easterine Kire is a poet, children’s litterateur and novelist from Nagaland. Her novel A Terrible Matriarchy is a challenge to the feminist ideology. It is about: everyday life in a Naga village; the importance of adhering to traditions in a clan-based society; the larger Indo-Naga army conflict that pervades homes and collective memories of people; and the passage of time, space and mortality. Kire asserts that women have their due share in committing violence against the girl child. The objective of feminism is to wake up the female gender and it is the right time to come out of the shadows. As a part of feminism, the concept of ‘new woman’ came into existence. The ‘new woman’ is primarily a woman of awareness, who is conscious of her low position in the family and society. The foundations of Matriarchy are maternal authority and women’s Superiority Complex. It is not only the patriarchal dominance which oppresses the womankind, but the matriarchy in the matriarchal society or even in the patriarchal society makes women suffer. Women of the present day society stand on the threshold of social change in an enviable position. They are intensely aware of the injustice heaped on them unlike their counterparts a generation ago. The concept of terrible matriarchy presented in the novel is clearly anti-feminist. Therefore, this paper attempts to study the matriarchal mindset in the Naga society through Kire’s novel A Terrible Matriarchy.
Keywords: Matriarchy, Feminism, Gender inequality.
THE CONCEPT OF HOME IN TEMSULA AO’S THESE HILLS CALLED HOME: STORIES FROM A WAR ZONE THROUGH THE LENS OF HISTORY AND MEMORY
Postcolonialism enshrines analysis of the history, culture and literature. It analyses the metaphysical, ethical and political concerns about cultural identity, gender, nationality, race, ethnicity, subjectivity, language and power. Once a hot bed of insurgency, Nagaland remained disturbed for years. In the light of such history and troubled political climate, literature from Nagaland abounds in tales of violence experienced in the past or encountered in everyday life. The short stories give us a picture of a trouble-torn land where violence and conflict becomes the dominant theme. Trapped and wounded in the tussle between the State and Naga ethnic insurgency groups, Temsula Ao describes how common people cope with violence in the land. Under this purview, the concept of home seems troubled and full of complexity. Under the pall of the curfew, normal life gets disrupted now and then. The home of the Nagas standing for security, peace and rest turns antagonist to their life. Casualty seems to be a familiar word in their psyche. This paper attempts to explore the loss of home, the failure of ideological basis of the leaders, loss of identity and the conflict and fear-ridden lives of Naga people in the wake of insurgency. Key words: Colonization, Power, Home, Identity, Conflict.
THE HUMANIST PERSPECTIVE IN MAHESH DATTANI’S FINAL SOLUTIONS
“I write my plays to be performed and appreciated by as wide a section of the society that my plays speak to and are about”(xi) says Dattani in his ‘Preface’ which he achieves in doing so as Sita Raina, the director of Where There’s a Will says, “to be the watcher of one’s self is to make intelligent changes in this life”(451). As one watches Dattani’s plays, there is much satisfaction because his plays “are a true reflection of my (his) time, place and socioeconomic background”(xv) not only limited to the Indians but worldwide for he takes bold moves by creating a work of art of “a country that has a myriad challenges to face politically, socially, artistically and culturally”(xv). He has great potential in “carrying on with the business of holding a mirror up to society” (xv) especially of the issues which are often less talked about. Final Solutions is one such play by Dattani which deals with the communal hostility that continues to bring disturbances in the country to this day. The country grants to her citizens the freedom to practice one’s own religion but communal hatred continues to exist within individuals. ‘Divide and Rule’ policy adopted by the British to divide the Indians seems to have a great impact which is still an issue in India today. The playwright in Final Solutions probes into the deep rooted issue which makes the Indian audience or public re-think of one’s hatred not only through actions but also through thought. The play mirrors not just communal disunity or hatred in Indian society but hatred in its various existing forms universally.
Key Words : Final Solutions, communal disunity, memory, trauma, humanistic observance
MAGIC REALISM IN SALMAN RUSHDIE’S THE SATANIC VERSES
This work is an attempt to study how Magic Realism as a technique is used in Saman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses. Magic Realism as an important tool of artistic expression in literary writings. The paper will mainly focus on the aspects and components of Magic Realism in The Satanic Verses.
Key words: Magic, Reality, Expression, Fantasy, Dream, Immigrant, Other
A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF DEBABRATA DAS’S SHORT STORIES ‘ARPITAR ERATI’ AND ‘NIRMALIR SAPON
Debrabata Das is an eminent short story writer writing in Assamese, in whose writing we find reflection of currents and cross-currents of contemporary society. His stories deviate from traditional storyline, his plots are exceptional when compared with contemporary Assamese short story writers. His stories bear stamp of his individual talent, his innovativeness, and his uniqueness as a writer, the qualities we very often find in the short stories of Bhabendra Nath Saikia, Homen Borgohain et al. His short stories like “Arpitar Erati” (One night in the life of Arpita) or “Nirmalir Sapon’ (Dreams of Nirmali) lay bare deeper recess of character’s mind, unnavel its inner working through devices like fantasy, dream, ambiguity, open endedness etc. Weaving his stories taking incidents and events from contemporary life Das uses language in a new way and reveals modern man’s longing. His stories lay bare hopes and despairs, illusion and reality, pangs and pains of his personce when confronted with the gap between desire and achievement, This paper attempts to analyse some stories of Debabrata Das to reveal modern man’s existential problem by following comparative and analytical method.
Key-words : Second person, third person, consciousness, fantasy, generation.
ROUSSEAU’S “CHILDHOOD” IN HIS CONFESSIONS AND ENLIGHTENMENT REASON: A CRITICAL PERSPECTIVE
Autobigraphical writing concerns writer’s own existence and his growing up. St. Augustine’s Confessions written in early part of 7th century AD when compared to Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Confessions wtitten in 18th century AD reveals glaringly the influence of the spirit of time on autobiographical works. In the 7th century when blind faith determined the course of thinking of people, in 18th century reason or questioning mind was the driving force behind human thought. St. Augustine’s blind faith in the existence of God, a superior farce contrasts with Roussean’s focus on the importance of understanding the ‘self’ critically. Rousseau examines his intellectual growth through the lens of his Enlightenment reason. This paper looks at the inter connection between Rousseau’s representation of the self and the role of national thought in the light of Rousseau’s Confessions.
Key-words : Medieval, reason, faith, intellect, Enlightment.
NONGTHOMBAM KUNJAMOHAN SINGHA’S ILISH MACHHER SWAD (TASTE OF ILISA) : AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF LABOUR CLASS POEPLE
Nongthombam Kunja Mohan Singha’s ‘Ilish Macher Swad’ is written in the backdroup of the struggling life of the fisher community of Barak Valley. The novel centres round fisher men’s life, their dreams and despairs, will and woes in their daily life. The central character Chaoba lives below poverty line, poorer than the poors in his community, who think day and night how to meet both ends meet. To catch fish and to sell it for living is his only dream. Even though he wishes early death of his ailing wife for he cannot provide her medication he in his heart of hearts he bears a desire to catch a hilsa fish and present it to his pregnant daughter for hearts content. However, he is compelled to see the fish he catches to buy a handful of nice and salt to feed his family. Through the character of Chaoba, representative of down trodden people the novelist tens the hopes and despires, ordeals and struggles of marginalised people of the society.
Key words : Hilsa, Barak, boat, river.