Inlays of Subjectivity

Affect and Action in Modern Indian Literature

Author : Dr. Nikhil Govind

Publisher Oxford University Press
Publication 2020
ISBN 9780199498727
eISBN 9780199098354
Page 224
Language English


This book discusses the question of subjectivity in modern Indian literature using some of the most influential literary texts of the last hundred years. Scholarship in Indian literature tends to be divided along the lines of region, language, historical period, class, caste and so on. However, this book, by foregrounding a concept—subjectivity—allows the concept to determine the architecture of the book. Thus there are chapters on the various modes of subjectivity—a sense of ethical subjectivity is often awakened by a fierce sense of injustice, and the first two chapters discuss this, in the context of a contemporary Malayalam novel by KR Meera, and Urmila Pawar’s memoir about her Dalit identity. The next two chapters delve into the literary history of selfhood in India—canonical writers such as the Hindi novelist Agyeya, the Urdu novelist Ismat Chughtai, and the Bengali novelists Saratchandra Chatterjee and RabindranathTagore are discussed. The last chapter revisits these concerns through the many voices employed by the Hindi novelist Krishna Sobti, whose career straddles the second half of the twentieth century.