Personal and National Destinies in Independent India: A Study of Selected Indian English Novels

Rositta Joseph Valiyamattam
Cambridge Scholars Publishing
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Personal and National Destinies in Independent India is an innovative analysis of the interface between individual lives and national history, between citizen and state in modern India, as reflected in contemporary fiction. It critiques the selected works of a host of distinguished Indian English novelists such as Gurcharan Das, Arun Joshi, Rohinton Mistry, Arundhati Roy, Meher Pestonji, Kiran Desai, Vikas Swarup, David Davidar, Aravind Adiga, Manjula Padmanabhan and Tarun Tejpal. The author offers a new interpretation of twelve major novels with reference to the enormous framework of nearly seventy years of the history and politics, culture and economy of independent India. This is a study of fiction that re-writes the grand Indian narrative from a genuine, subaltern point of view and pays tribute to the heroism of ordinary Indians in times of extraordinary transformation. In these times of conflict and disparity which threaten democratic values, these novelists advocate an inclusive and humane India with a strong moral core instead of aggressive or elitist nationalism. They represent an era of painful introspection, an attempt to keep the soul of the nation alive. This unique project would be of interest to students and scholars of Literature, Political Science and History, especially Post-colonial studies. The vast scope of the time period, geographical expanse, social groups, writers and works covered here makes the work comprehensive and contemporary; very few such works on recent Indian history and fiction exist as of now.