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Introduction of My Theory and Theorist
Salman Rushdie is perhaps the most respected postcolonial British writer writing about his country (s) of origin, India and Pakistan. I say Countries because before the great break away, the subcontinent was all in one. The book under consideration here is his third novel, called Shame; which, unlike its predecessors, the midnight's children and Grimus, is not in essence set in India. This particular work is set in postcolonial Pakistan and deals, in the larger part, about the issues of women in a society that is less than kind in its cultural approach to women's place in society.
Being a clearly political writer, it is no wonder that Shame has taken on the rather unfamiliar choice of female activism in a country like Pakistan whose laws and traditions are used to undermining them (Tindell). Almost all of Salman Rushdie's earlier works deals in unfathomable detail the issue of politics in these countries. The nature of politics in any country directly or indirectly determines the way the people live. Therefore, the kind of leadership that is put in the fore, and whatever laws they adhere to determines the way the people live. It is the duty of the writer, therefore, to portray in all essence what really happens in the ground. Rushdie does this in a brilliant way in Shame; like in most other novels that he has written
My study brings me to the choice of a few issues that have formed the bulwark of Salman Rushdie's book; Shame. First, the historical context and the nature of postcolonial Pakistani politicks, the place of women in the new state and their place as the subject of the novel, the culture context, and the writing of the Rushdie, the magical realism and its self conscious nature.
Pakistani, like most other Islamic countries, falls into that category of countries with extremely stringent rules, referred to the Sheria laws, and which have either to be followed or the consequences are brutal at times. The weightier side of this falls on the women, who are often the recipients of this unfair approach to life and culture. Salman Rushdie takes a closer look at this issue by the portrayal of the women characters in Shame. However, Rushdie portrays these Pakistani women in a rather bad light through the westernized view of things; that they are hopelessly, and badly oppressed (Tindell). However, his authentic voice and narrative power leaves the reader at a choice to decide for themselves what in essence these women and their lives are really about. He avoids the provision of a clear purpose in his work, like a good writer should, and leaves the reader to draw conclusions.
Perhaps a more central part of Rushdie's shame is the element of shame itself. This is interrelated more with gender itself. Though the women in Shame are or entirely authentic as representatives of the women in the region described, it is of note that they are afflicted by shame for being women in the place where they are. This may be due to the fact that they are viewed as lesser beings on the basis of their gender (Raja). There is a clear way in which the shamefulness of the characters permeates the novel. At the age of twelve, the protagonist is introduced to the aspects of this shame. It's inclusive of shyness, discomfiture, shyness, and modesty (Landow).
The Muslim women are supposed to embody this in the presence of their men and are therefore taught this way since childhood, as is the protagonist in this case. Should they, as Sufiya, Raza, Bilqu and Omar, decide to defy society and be something other than is prescribed, then the task is at time either too great to overcome or simply impossible to attain. Impersonal forces of society and state work together to undermine them further. The mothers in this story have had their attempt for they falter, if anything by choice, to train the protagonist according to the strict Islamic laws (Deszcz). The resultant of this is that Sharam grows up to overcome the inherent shame and indeed to live a better life.
It is further showcased by the manner in which Begum Hyder approaches the issue of pregnancy and childbirth. He indeed approaches his women and tells her to get ready for it is time to plant the seed. This in a western view of things may be viewed not only as rude, but more like the man is taking the woman as just as simple object of use (Landow). In Salman's own words; "she felt like a naturally fertile soil whose naturally fertile soil was being worn out, by an overzealous gardener."
Summarizing the Rest of the Theory Article
All this helps to show how an individual author can use their creative voice to bring to life the issues that are real within and singular society. In essence, even though Rushdie's works have been a mix of both breathtaking human interest entertainment and the other end of this which is politics, he does indeed bring to the limelight diverse issues that in no doubt reshapes the way his readers view the world in which they, or others, live (Sharpe). The case of his banned book; the satanic verses, is a clear indication that there is a definite seriousness in the way he speaks of these particular people and what concerns them.