A DEVOTED SON is one story from 'The Penguin Book of MODERN INDIAN Short Stories'.
A DEVOTED SON by Anita Desai in above Penguin Book: (hier online bestellen)
"A Devoted Son" is an ironic story about perception: how good things that you wish for have a dark
underside. It also shows how modern life has changed India.
Excerpt from "A Devoted Son"
"When the results appeared in the morning papers, Rakesh
scanned thern, barefoot and in his pyjamas, at the garden gate,
then went up the steps to the verandah where his father sat sip-
ping his morning tea and bowed down to touch his feet.
'A first division, son?' his father asked, beaming, reaching for
'At the top of the list, papa,' Rakesh murmured, as if awed.
'First in the country.'
Bedlam broke loose then. The family whooped and danced.
The whole day long visitors streamed into the small yellow
house at the end of the road, to congratulate the parents of this
Wunderkind, to slap Rakesh on the back and fill the house and
garden with the sounds and colours of a festival. There were garlands and halwa, party clothes and gifts
(enough fountain pens to
last years, even a watch or two), nerves and temper and joy, all
in a multicoloured whirl of pride and great shining vistas newly
opened: Rakesh was the first son in the family to receive an education, so much had been sacrificed in
order to send him to
school and then medical college, and at last the fruits of their sacrifice had arrived, golden and
To everyone who came to him to say, 'Mubarak, Varmaji, your son has brought you glory,' the father said,
'Yes, and do you know what is the first thing he did when he saw the results this morning? He came and
touched my feet. He bowed down and touched my feet.' This moved many of the women in the crowd so much
that they were seen to raise the ends of their saris and dab at their tears while the men reached out
for the betel-leaves and sweetmeats that were offered around on trays and shook their heads in wonder
and approval of such exemplary filial behaviour. 'One does not often see such behaviour in sons any
more,' they all agreed, a little enviously perhaps." ...
From: 'The Penguin Book of MODERN INDIAN Short Stories', p.92
About the author:zurück zur Übersicht
Anita Desai (June 24, 1937 - ) is an Indian novelist.
Desai was born Anita Mazumdar to a German mother Toni Nime and a Bengali businessman, D.N. Mazumdar in
Mussoorie, India. She grew up speaking German at home and Bengali, Urdu, Hindi and English outside the
house. She first learned to read and write in English at school and as a result it became her "literary
language". Despite German being her first language she did not visit Germany until later in life as
an adult. She was a student at Queen Mary's Higher Secondary School in Delhi and received her B.A. in
English literature in 1957 from the University of Delhi (Miranda House). The following year she married
Ashvin Desai, a businessman and raised four children before publishing her first novel in 1963,
Cry The Peacock. She considers Clear Light Of Day (1980) her most autobiographical work as it is set
during her coming of age and also in the same neighborhood she grew up in. In 1984 she published
In Custody about an Urdu poet in his declining days, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. In
1993 Merchant Ivory Productions released In Custody. It was directed by Ismail Merchant, with a
screenplay by Shahrukh Husain. It won the 1994 President of India Gold Medal for Best Picture and
stars the noted actors Shashi Kapoor, Shabana Azmi and Om Puri. Her German background shows up in
her 1988 novel, Baumgarter's Bombay. Also in 1993 she became a creative writing teacher at Massachusetts
Institute of Technology. Her latest novel published in 2004, The Zig Zag Way is set in 20th century
Desai has taught at Mount Holyoke College and Smith College. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of
Literature, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and of Girton College, Cambridge University.
The Penguin Book of MODERN INDIAN Short Stories
Taschenbuch: 256 Seiten
Verlag: Penguin Books Ltd (November 1990)
Preis: € ???
If you want to buy this book second hand, send me an eMail
Used, but in very good condition
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