Sectarian and Sexual Lines in Indian Writing in English
Chapter 12: Female Bodies in Revolt: Githa Hariharan’s Representation of the Female Body
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Female Bodies in Revolt: Githa Hariharan’s Representation of the Female Body
“The Remains of the Feast”: The Female Body in Revolt and Jouissance
“The Remains of the Feast”: Anti-Brahminism in the context of mother-and-daughter fiction
As we have seen already, the question of female subjectivity is of crucial importance for feminist critiques of Indian social mores in more recent Indian English writing. Githa Hariharan is of particular interest in this context because of the way she represents female subject formation in her short story “The Remains of the Feast” (1992) in her own unique style, using striking bodily representations. This text is full of polluting objects which blur the “boundary of the self’s clean and proper body”,1 threatening individuation and selfhood formation, distancing it in signifying the maternal body and in an obsessive gaze at the corpse, “the utmost abjection”, as Kristeva terms it (Kristeva 1982: 4).
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