Post Colonial literature in India
One of the major influences of British colonialism on Indian subcontinent was the gradual evolution of Indian literature (especially novels) in English language from the latter half of the nineteenth century. …
This form of mutation in Indian literature, though seen in streaks during nineteenth century, did not appear in significant volumes to affect the literary scene strongly, until the 1930s. With emergence of Mahatma Gandhi in the socio-political scenario, some of the Indian writers under his inspiration took cognizance of the surrounding issues. Indian literature, which heretofore lacked representation of socio-political realities, was now seen woven with everyday incidences. Thus, the Gandhian phenomenon, which had taken the Indian socio-political world by storm, also changed the style and thematic representation of Indian literature forever. It was under this scenario, which gave rise to the first three famous writers of post-colonial or Anglo-Indian novels, R.K. Narayan, Raja Rao, and Mulk Raj Anand, during the mid-1930s. They represented the religious and socio-political characteristics of the nation in a colourful and creative manner that reflected and at the same time safeguarded the true Indian identity. The publishers, previously reluctant to publish Anglo-Indian form of literary works, came forward to accept this new form of writing. The post-colonial effect, which led to the emergence of the so-called ‘Indian Writing,’ will be explored in this paper, using secondary researches, primarily based on literature reviews, while focusing on the works by R.K. Narayan (Swami and his friends), Raja Rao (Kanthapura) and Mulk Raj Anand (Untouchable). 1 Introduction Postcolonial discourse is “the latest catchall term to dazzle the academic mind.” 1 1.1 Background study Postcolonial literature, also referred to as the New English literature, comprises of a specific group of literary writings that involve socio-political issues associated with the struggle for independence of people formerly under colonial rule. This form of literature is also associated with critical writing that excoriates works reflecting colonial connotations or those with hints of racism.2 Postcolonial literature can be aptly defined as “a collection of theoretical and critical strategies used to examine the culture (literature, politics, history, and so forth) of former colonies of the European empire, and their elation to the rest of the world [and] question the salutary effects of empire…and raise such issues as racism and exploitation.” 3 Post-colonial literary works deal with social, political and cultural issues of colonised countries, and presents various aspects of the problems faced by nations that are in a transitional phase and are in the process of establishing their own national identities, after gaining independence from colonial rule. Post colonialism has gained prominence from the 1950s, which finally culminated in various studies on post colonialism during the 1970s in many universities.4 In the context of modern and critical literature, post-colonialism currently is an issue under consideration. Colonialism, which indicates subjection over another nation, is associated with domination of economic, social-cultural and political aspects of the conquered country. Hence ...
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