Sectarian and Sexual Lines in Indian Writing in English
Chapter 5: Partition Novels after Midnight’s Children: An Overview
← 48 | 49 →CHAPTER 5
Partition Novels after Midnight’s Children: An Overview
After Midnight’s Children, more than twenty Partition novels suddenly appeared, double the number before that. These include A Golden Age (2007) by Bangladeshi writer Tahmina Anam, which deals with the war in Bangladesh in 1971. Like the novels before Midnight’s Children, such works also show concern about the issues of displacement, mob mentality, violence against women, and the political situation leading up to the Partition. However, their primary concern is noticeably the contemporary history of India, seeking a national identity.
Midnight’s Children is a watershed because of the way it presents subject formation, self-alienation and fragmentation in connection to the formation and fragmentation of India. In this unique structure, the dream of a unified India, as a grand narrative, is deconstructed. Amitav Ghosh’s The Shadow Lines, Mukul Kesavan’s Looking Through Glass, Shashi Tharoor’s The Great Indian Novel, and Nina Sibal’s Yatra: The Journey followed suit in various ways. Also, many remarkable novels with significant gender perspectives appeared, such as Bapsi Sidhwa’s Ice-Candy-Man (1988), Manju Kapur’s Difficult Daughters (1998), and Shauna Singh Baldwin’s What the Body Remembers (1999). Amrita Pritam’s “The Skeleton” (translated into English from Punjabi) also deserves attention. A Golden Age (2007), the first English Partition novel by a Bangladeshi author, Tahmina Anam also appeared.
← 49 | 50 →An Outline of Partition Novels after Midnight’s Children
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