Indo Nostalgia A Concept

Essay add: 24-10-2015, 21:50   /   Views: 259

Indian past is a land of treasure for rich fictional and artistic creation. Indo-nostalgia cannot be defined in a single sentence. It is more a thing of realization, of perception. It is a direct access to an Indian mind.

It does not lie in exotic content but in the mind behind the organization of that content. Whether one writes about apples or flowers or mangoes or mountains. The point 'life attitudes', 'modes of perception' is important in this connection. In other words, 'It is India in microcosm'.

It is the sum total of all that is reflected in the mode of life of Indian people- their thought processes and outlook on life and their needs, aims and aspirations. Moreover it is an alien sensibility. Indian consciousness is deep-rooted philosophy hence there is no better yardstick than Indo-nostalgia to measure the culture of the nation and to value Indian fiction.

Moreover, Indo-nostalgia is a fictional technique to project the image of India, not only to transmit with her own cultural identity but also to create an awareness of this identity in the minds of her own people and the rest of the world.

Indo-Nostalgic Writing- A Novel Experiment:

Indian novels are thoroughly Indian in treatment and sensibility. What characterizes the Indo-nostalgic writing is actually the mind, the soul behind the organization of the content, the life-attitudes and modes of perception. Rooted in the native soul, the Indian writer struggles to cope with the spirit of the modern world and puts forth its own peculiar fruit.

Bhabani Bhattacharjee (1966) says in an interview that the fruit-bearing:…has not just been traditional… writer cannot live without roots. An Indian writer deeply concerned with lives of the people cannot get transplanted from the earth of centuries-old traditions despite full exposure to alien influences.Indian English writers are nourished by the alien consciousness. They state how they have been in the Indian milieu and write about their experiences of today's Indian society without losing the national identity. Indian English literature is greatly conditioned by Indian geography, Indian style of life, culture and speech habits in different linguistic areas.

An Indian writer can assert he is right in exploring himself as an Indian English writer- that his landscape is Indian, his thought is moulded by his political, social, economic and philosophical scene, so on and so forth. What they see is the Indian scene- the flowers, the fruits, the trees, the mountains, the gardens, the temples, the huts, the gutter, the multi-coloured, multi-lingual, multi-cultured people and what they feel the effervescence of the Indian temperament. Professor Srinivasa Iyengar (1962:293) rightly points out the true Indian consciousness as:To be Indian in thought and feeling, emotion and experience, yet also to court the graces and submit to the discipline of English for expression, is a novel experiment in creative mutation. There are successes and failures, and the failures are perhaps more numerous than the successes.

All the same, there are the men and women who have bravely run the race and reached the goal, and they deserve due recognition.Shashi Tharoor has retained close connections with India. His grandmother and mother still live in India and he visits them often. For him, India is a country; which despite of differences of ethnicity, geography, language and religion holds together through its common adherence to an idea of 'India.'…If America is a melting pot, then to me India is a Thali, a selection of sumptuous dishes in different bowls. Each tastes different and does not necessarily mix with the next, but they belong together on the same plate and they complement with each other in making the meal a satisfying repast. ( Tharoor rightly says that, Americans, Englishmen or even Australians have often set their fiction in lands outside their own.

Indians write about India without exoticism. He says:...I write of an India of multiple truths and multiple realities, an Indian that is greater than the sum of its parts. English expresses that diversity better than any Indian language preciously because it is not rooted in any one region of my vast country. At the same time, as an Indian, I remain conscious of and connected to my pre-urban and non-anglophone antecedents; my novels reflect an intellectual heritage that embraces the ancient epic Mahabharata, the Kerala folk dance and the Hindi movies of 'Bollywood', as well as Shakespeare, Woodhouse and the Beatles. (Ibid.)Shashi Tharoor believes that his life has been a multi-cultured experience, though not particularly a collision of those various cultures that have been part of his evolution.

He lived in England, America, India, and Europe and in South East Asia- that is a multiplicity of experiences and different cultures.The diplomat says, "I write for the same reason that a cow gives milk."As an emigrant, he has drawn his literary material only from India:…I have grown up here. My intellect; my values have been shaped and formed by the experience of growing up in India. So India matters very much to me, and I want in turn to matter to India and the way I can do is through my writings. I have written things that matter to me and I believe matter to other Indians.

I am sure at some point in my fiction I will explore, not so much the UN world perhaps yet, but certainly the world of Indians abroad. I have done this to certain extent in my journalistic writings so putting it into my fiction is certainly within the realms of possibility. But not immediately, I still have enough to say about India that in want to say. (Ibid)In the present research work, representative novels of Shashi Tharoor have been examined, analysed and evaluated against the background of the social, political, cultural and literary scene of India to arrive at the much desired conclusion. The conception of Indo-nostalgia is neither a substitute for discipline nor even a deliberate pursuit to create a kind of self-mystification.

It is the spontaneous flow of the heritage of Indian culture and not just a trick that develop an imaginative talent. It is an artistic involvement that affects the Indian creative spirit; that is 'Conscious's fabrications' and 'wistful symbols' to discover Indo-nostalgia.

Myth as a Special characteristic technique of Indo-nostalgia:

The word 'Myth' has been so constantly used in literature of the world over the last few decades that it has now become something of a cliché of the literary criticism. Besides its use in literary criticism, the term is also used in a variety of meanings in sociology, anthropology, psychology, philosophy and in comparative religion, each field of study investing it with different connotations. But its use in literature is more extensive now-a-days and interests the literary critics more widely than anyone else.One basic question may crop up as to why are myths important in the study of literature? Why are myths and legends a significant factor in the thought pattern of the writers?

The answer to these questions is not difficult to find. It is very interesting to speculate why poets and writers have always been drawn towards myths and legends. The first and foremost reason may be their quality of timelessness and antiquity.

Myths are old far-off distant things; naturally they lend enchantment and charm to the modern people. The charm of the Indian mythological stories, in spite of their distance from contemporary reality does have a kind of fundamental significance. The Indian writers are aware of this and recreated the myths with all their literary possibilities.

Another reason is that myths along with folk tales and ancient legends provide abstract story patterns. Northrop Fry (1963:27) has made a significant remark on this:Writers are interested in (them) for the same reason that painters are interested in

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