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Arudhati Roy

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Arudhati Roy is an Indian novelist born on November 24 1961. Her novel The God of small Things, which was written in 1992, and completed in 1996 won a price in 1997. The book, which is an autobiographical, captures her childhood experience and it propelled her in to international fame. The story in this book is about the childhood experiences of fraternal twins whose lives get destroyed by the law of love. The book describes how the small things in life affect the way people behave.

The set up of this story is in a town called Ayemenem in an Indian state. The twins namely Rahel and Estha featured in this story are only seven years old during their separation and reunites at the age of 31. The large part of this story is written in relevance to the seven-year-old children.

Ammu Ipe gets married to a tea estate assistant manager who turns out to be an alcoholic. He beats her up and prostitutes her to his boss to maintain his job. (Balvannanadhan 2007) Despite the circumstances surrounding her marriage, she gives birth to twin and eventually leaves her husband. The circumstances leading to her marriage are to escape the wrath of her parents as she manages to convince them to allow her spend holidays with a distant relative in Calcutta and this led to her marriage.

Baby Kochamma the sister of Pappachi had fallen in love with an Irish priest and decides to enter the convent to be close to him. This happens against the wish of her father who later on rescues her from the convent and sends her abroad for further studies. Her desire to be close to her lover turns out to bitterness. She remains single for the rest of her life and rejoices in other people’s misfortune especially the twins.

Ammu had a brother called Chacko who moves to Oxford to further his studies. He falls in love with Margaret and marries her. They are blessed with a little girl whom they named Sophie. Margaret discloses to Chacko of her secret affairs with another man shortly after the birth of their daughter. They divorce and Chacko returns to India to manage his mother’s business. Margaret remarries and her husband dies in an accident. Chacko invites her for charismas holidays. (Roy 2005 37-38)As he travels to the airport to pick them in the company of the twins, their mother and Kochamma, they meet with a group of protesters who humiliate Kochamma by forcing her to wave a placard. Among the protesters is a man called Velutha whom she grows to hate so much. On the contrary, the twins develop a liking towards Velutha and so does their mother. On discovering that Ammu is in love with Velutha, her family locks her in the room, and she blames the twins for his misfortune. They then decide to escape, and their cousin Sophie begs them to take her with them. The boat they are sailing with capsizes and Sophie drowns while the rest survive. Margaret chocks with jealousy after realizing that her is dead, and the twins are a live. Kochamma takes advantage of the situation and poisons Chacko against Ammu and her children. They are kicked out of the house, and Ammu sends Estha to live with her father since she is jobless. Ammu dies, and the twins meet again at the age of 31. Their bonding is so strong, and they realize that no one else can understand their grievances.

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Related essays

  1. "The God of Small Things"
  2. Ammu and Velutha
  3. Asoka’s Policy on Dharma
  4. Extreme Impact
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