Negotiating Cultural Change: Githa Hariharan’s The Thousand Faces of Night
The IUP Journal of English Studies, Vol. VI, No. 3, September 2011, pp. 39-50
Posted: 6 Jul 2012
Date Written: September 2011
Literature has always been a means of reinforcing cultural and social values. Juxtaposing the multifaceted Indian women and their lives of three generations, Githa Hariharan has portrayed the changing scenario in the Indian society. Her concern is to bring out the irrationalities and injustices of domestic and social life. Women were ready to accept their archetypal female role in the past. Modern women have started to rebel against the age-old social conventions. The Thousand Faces of Night deals with the sanction of space for woman in the Indian society and her struggle to emerge as an individual expressing her existential anguish. The novel presents the effects of patriarchy on women of different social classes and ages and particularly the varied responses to the restrictive institution of marriage. Women were confined to their homes, they were oppressed and opportunities for self-fulfillment were bleak. Even in the modern changed ambience their position is still debatable as they stand on the threshold of social change.
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