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    Common Readers and the Singularity of Literature: A View on Derek Attridge’s Analysis of the Process of Reading

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    Reading is a complex process. It mostly aims at getting at the most accurate meaning of a text, but it is not always easy. Because what is the accurate meaning is something very tough to decide. A text has various qualities which nearly all need to be analysed to come closer to a complete meaning. It needs expertise and attention while reading any text. On the other hand, the process of reading itself has various aspects to look at. For example, a reader always has more than one perspective available to analyse and interpret a text. And it is necessary that a text is read and analysed using these different perspectives, so that the meaning one gets after such a reading is not narrow or obscure. Specially the reading of a literary text needs some extra attention. Here, the language is mostly minutely used, and there are qualities which are different and mostly superior to other common texts. At the same time, sometimes, the kind of meaning which is produced also depends on the reader. A common reader without expertise may come up with some simple meaning. But, at the same time, a scholarly reader may come up with some complex meaning of the same text. Thus, there is always a possibility that the same text may have different meanings by different authors. The present paper focuses on the common readers’ reading of the texts and the different kinds and stages of reading as put forth by Derek Attridge in his works The Work of Literature and The Singularity of Literature, respectively. Common readers read the texts differently from the way the scholarly readers read them. Then, how far is it possible and necessary to take all readers as just readers and make some general comments on the reading process as a whole? It is a fact that based on the cultural and educational backgrounds, different people respond to the same text differently, and their respective responses should be respected as they all are readers, after all, who have the freedom to comment and interpret. The present paper tries to analyse this inclusivity in Attridge’s arguments as far as the process of reading is concerned

    Secular Philosophy of Peace in Shashi Tharoor’s Why I Am a Hindu

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    The research article elucidates and critically evaluates the prominent ideologies and perspectives articulated by Shashi Tharoor in his seminal book, Why I Am a Hindu He presents a cogent narrative on the diverse philosophical tenets of Hinduism, and accentuates their relevance in nurturing a secular and peaceful society. The crux of his exposition lies in the contention that Hinduism, as a religion, embodies pluralism, tolerance, and a non-dogmatic approach, which can be the catalysts for fostering peace in an increasingly polarized world. Not only in ancient era but also in modern scenario, here everyone is playing the “religious and communal card” to achieve the desired supremacy in society. Some innocent believers of religion believe that the condition of their religion is extremely in danger and there is an urgent need to be the revival and protection of it. In act of protection of their religious ethics, they can inter any extreme to be under the political umbrella. There are many literary minds who wrote against such religious extremist who crossed the boundary constitutional secularism. Tharoor’s adeptness in contrasting the philosophical underpinnings of Hinduism with the prevailing notions of religious chauvinism is emphasized, particularly in the Indian context. To him, the Hinduism began in the Indian subcontinent and spread other parts of the world through the migrants and immigrants. The central core of Hindu religion is that it respects every religion in tolerable limits. The novel is divided into three parts and each part of it well described the concept of Hinduism and Hindutva. It is all about tolerance and peace and not about supremacy to other religions. The article investigates the position of religious tolerance and tries to explore the challenge of radical extremism as a source of national disharmony that spares the opportunities of national unity. The focal point is the elucidation of how Tharoor propagates and transcends parochial boundaries. The article encapsulates an incisive exploration of the synthesis between ancient Hindu wisdom and modern secular values, and their collective potential in the establishment of a more inclusive and peaceful global society

    A.K. Ramanujan: A Poet of Different Cultures and Languages

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    The paper explores the impact of different cultures and languages in the poetic writings of A. K. Ramanujan. He has a full command over Indian culture, scriptures and rituals. Tamil, Kannad, Sanskrit and English languages are well known to him. Language is a very important tool in the formulation of a culture and its aesthetics, as it is a medium of expression. Without language no human culture can be imagined. Culture is a manifestation of the ideas, customs, and social behavior of a particular group of human society. It is a code of conduct which guides and control a certain human society. Ramanujan was deeply rooted in Indian culture and tradition, which is evident in his work. However, his exposure to Western education, particularly his studies in the United States, also influenced his literary style and themes. As a result, Ramanujan's work reflects a unique blend of different cultures and languages, and he is known for bridging the gap between Indian and Western literary traditions. Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary defines culture as “the customs and beliefs; ways of life and social organization of a particular country or group” (373). The cultural and linguistic influences are evident in the literature of any nation, therefore, it always becomes a perfect source of information. Literature of any nation keeps the record of its history, geography, culture and tradition. For instance, we have to study Leo Tolstoy to know the history and geography of nineteenth century Russian literature; similarly, if we want to know something about the English culture, we have to study English literature as literature is a part of culture. In the same way, there are several languages and cultures that are observed in India and each of them are closely connected with the theme of Indianness and this is how it paves the way of unity in diversity

    Correlating Language and Music for the Activation of Human Mind

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    As Heinrich Heine puts it, “Where words leave off, music begins”. Music and language belong to a common origin i.e. sound, a form of energy. In other words, language and music are two sons of the same mother. Language and music both engage the auditory system, utilizing similar neural pathways to process sound and rhythm. Just as language relies on patterns of sounds and syntax to convey meaning, music utilizes melody, harmony, and structure to evoke emotions and communicate messages. A language always talks about the speech sounds that are produced by the vocal cords while music is the outcome of non-oral sounds or sometimes may be the oral sounds. Both language and music have the ability to elicit powerful emotional responses in individuals, stirring feelings of joy, sadness, or nostalgia. The rhythmic and melodic elements in music can enhance language processing by providing a rhythmic framework that aids in memorization and comprehension. Though language and music are not always complementary to each other but one seems incomplete in absence of the other. Language and music share the capacity to convey complex ideas and narratives, allowing us to express our thoughts and experiences in nuanced and creative ways. Studies have shown that exposure to music can improve language skills, including vocabulary acquisition, syntax comprehension, and verbal fluency. The use of prosody, intonation, and rhythm in language mirrors the melodic and rhythmic components of music, highlighting their interconnectedness. Musical training has been found to enhance linguistic abilities, as musicians often demonstrate better pitch discrimination, phonological awareness, and language learning skills. Language and music can both serve as cultural markers, reflecting and preserving the traditions, values, and identities of different communities. The shared neural processes involved in language and music suggest a deep-rooted correlation, as they tap into fundamental mechanisms of auditory perception and cognitive processing. The present research article is a descriptive study on the relationship between language and music and their effects on the mind and body of the human beings. In the first section of this paper, the linguistic aspects that are akin to music have been attempted to be pointed out. Similarly, in the following section, the core of the music has been discussed in context to language. In the third section, a comparative study of language and music has been done on the basis of the points discussed in the preceding sections. Finally, the paper also discusses as how the amalgamation of the two i.e. language and music can be helpful in activating the human mind and the body

    From Individuality to Universality: A Critical Exposition of ‘Self’ of Women in Dalit Movement and Literature in India

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    This scholarly research article delves into the conceptualization of ‘Self’ of women in the Dalit movement and literature in India, providing a critical analysis that bridges the gap between individuality and universality. It initiates a discourse on the often-overlooked narrative of Dalit women in a predominantly patriarchal and caste-dominated society, underscoring the experiences they encapsulate, extending from personal narratives to shared universality. Through the examination of an assortment of primary sources, including autobiographies, literary texts, speeches, and interviews of Dalit women, this study unveils the complexities in their identities, informed by the intersection of caste, gender, and class. It further explores how these experiences, entrenched in oppression and resistance, shape the ‘Self’ and communal identity of Dalit women. The article advances a unique theoretical framework that combines intersectional feminism and subaltern studies to decipher the nuances of Dalit women’s selfhood. The framework enables a systematic exploration of the convergences and divergences in the perception of ‘Self’ amongst Dalit women, aiding in the understanding of their position within the wider socio-political discourse. In unearthing the shared collective consciousness arising from individual struggles, the research sheds light on the universality of Dalit women’s experiences. Simultaneously, it exposes the evolution of the Dalit women’s movement from a regional force to a global voice, forging an essential link between local experiences and universal human rights discourses. This study conclusively asserts the need for broader recognition and comprehension of Dalit women’s narratives, not as a marginal story but as a central one that intersects with various global feminist and human rights movements. It proposes that the understanding of Dalit women’s ‘Self’ is pivotal in moving towards an inclusive and equitable society, thereby contributing to a more comprehensive understanding of social justice in India and beyond

    William Shakespeare’s Macbeth in Adaptation: A Cultural Materialist Reading of Bollywood Movie Maqbool

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    The present research article focuses on Bollywood movie Maqbool (2004), the Hindi language movie adaptation of Shakespeare’s famous play Macbeth (1606). Shakespeare’s plays have become available in the cinematic adaptations in many different languages across the globe. All these adaptations focus on different aspects of the original texts, and come up with some entirely new movies which at times have the Shakespearean elements in them. The plots, settings and the timelines are of course different, but they make Shakespeare’s dramas available to a wider audience across different cultures. Maqbool is such a movie adaptation in Hindi, directed by Indian film-director, Vishal Bhardwaj. The movie relates to the incidents and events from Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, though it has entirely new flavours of its own as a typical Bollywood movie. Like Shakespeare’s plays, these movies also have something to offer to the critics. A close analysis of such adaptations, in relation to the original textual creations, can bring forth many new critical perspectives. This article aims at analysing the movie, Maqbool from the perspective of cultural materialism where it tries to bring out that how the movie interrelates with the contemporary social and political situations of the time which it depicts. There are certain hidden structures in the movie which remain unearthed when watched without critical eyes. The paper attempts a cultural materialist reading of Maqbool to bring out such hidden aspects of the movie

    Representation of Gender Violence in Jaishree Misra’s Afterwards

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    Gender violence is one of the major social issues which needs proper attention. It is one of the worst crimes of human society. ‘Gender Violence’ is an umbrella term that includes a large number of crimes directly or indirectly posed against a person’s sexuality. Several crimes like domestic violence, marital rape, human trafficking, honor killing, and other such abuses are heinous realities of the contemporary Indian society. To a large extent, the trauma of gender violence is not only physical but also psychological. Sadly, it has remained neglected for a very long period. However, by the twentieth century, voices fighting against such issues have gained wide recognition. The literary representation of sexual violence in Indian English literature is a way of giving voice to silent unheard victims and is worth critical attention. Jaishree Misra is a contemporary Indian English novelist delineating various socio-cultural issues of the contemporary Indian society through her large gamut of literary works. Her novel Afterwards (2004) deals with the life of a woman named Maya, trapped in a loveless and suffocating marriage. This research paper attempts to study the textual representation of sexual violence in the contemporary Indian English fictions with special attention to the selected literary work

    The Role of Women Characters in the Select Novels of Salman Rushdie

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    Salman Rushdie, a postmodernist immigrant, is considered as one the greatest novelist of the 20th century. His apt use of magical realism, incorporates mythology, religion, history, fantasy, and humor into the real world. He narrates his life story and relates it to the national history of India. Rushdie uses the magical realist technique to deal about the postcolonial people of India, and various postcolonial issues. His writing focuses on India’s history, politics, and identity as seen through his narrators. There is a blending of fantasy and reality with his fantastical fiction. Salman Rushdie presents women as strong characters to break free from their oppressive roles through his works. He develops strong female characters who face life with great fortitude and strength rather than meek personality. This research article critically investigates the role of women characters in selected novels by the acclaimed author, Salman Rushdie. A corpus of three major works—Midnight’s Children, The Satanic Verses, and Shame—has been selected for detailed analysis. The study aims to illuminate the varying dimensions of women’s representation, their influence, and the evolution of their roles in these narratives, serving as mirrors to the sociopolitical realities of their time. The article applies a combined theoretical framework of feminist literary criticism and postcolonial discourse to unpack the intricate characterizations and their wider implications. Findings reveal that Rushdie’s women characters are often depicted as multi-dimensional, complex individuals who actively influence the plot and resist conforming to traditional roles. They embody strength, resilience, and liberation in the face of cultural, political, and religious adversities, breaking the mold of passive feminine stereotypes. Despite being enmeshed within patriarchal societal structures, these characters often subvert normative constraints, highlighting the intersection of gender, power, and resistance in Rushdie’s novels. Through the use of magical realism, Rushdie juxtaposes reality with the fantastical, further challenging conventional expectations of women in literature. Rushdie’s depiction of women provides significant insights into the complexities of postcolonial feminist identities, societal norms, and cultural heritage. His novels, while being grounded in their specific contexts, resonate on a universal scale, enriching the discourse around the representation of women in literature

    Consciousness of Religion, Mythology and Spirituality: A Study of Prof. Vikas Sharma’s Novel I.A.S. Today

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    Literature expresses the perceptions, feelings and desires of a writer. Indian English writers have predominantly been culturally conscious of religion. Religion and literature give peace to suffering humanity. I.A.S. Today is a novel written by Prof. Vikas Sharma.  This research article delves into the intricate layering of religious, mythological, and spiritual themes present in Prof. Vikas Sharma’s novel I.A.S. Today. Sharma, a prominent figure in contemporary literature, weaves a tale that juxtaposes the bureaucratic life of the Indian Administrative Service (I.A.S.) with profound reflections on India’s rich tapestry of religious and mythological narratives. At the heart of the study is an analysis of how Sharma’s characters navigate the complex moral and spiritual terrain, influenced by ancient tales and modern-day challenges. The narrative isn’t merely a portrayal of administrative life; it becomes a mirror to society, reflecting deeply rooted beliefs, cultural norms, and the internal conflicts individuals face when trying to reconcile their professional and personal aspirations with spiritual growth. Drawing from primary textual references and contextualizing them with classical Indian myths, the article underscores the ways in which the protagonist’s journey in the bureaucratic labyrinth is symbolic of a larger cosmic journey. Sharma’s work raises questions about dharma (duty), karma (action), and moksha (liberation) in the face of modern challenges. Various characters of this novel are influenced by the teachings given in Indian scriptures like The Srimad Bhagvadgita, The Upanishads and The Ramayana. They try to shape themselves by following the teachings and look for the right aim of human life. This paper aims to study the spiritual wisdom given in this novel which will open the right path for present generation. Furthermore, the research highlights Sharma’s innovative approach to storytelling, melding the real with the mythical. Through meticulous character analysis and plot dissection, the article reveals how the novel acts as a conduit for introducing contemporary readers to age-old philosophical questions. By doing so, Sharma not only offers a commentary on the state of present-day bureaucracy but also delves into timeless existential queries. Through this analysis, the article establishes Sharma’s novel as a significant contribution to Indian literature, bridging the ancient and the modern, the mundane, and the spiritual

    Religion in Begum Rokeya’s Literature: Resemblance with the Marxist Narrative

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    Against the dark background of the social exclusion of women, especially Muslim women, Begum Rokeya, the pioneer of women’s emancipation in Bengal, British India in the early 20th century, stood with her enlightenment like a beacon and pushed her way for women’s emancipation from the depths of misery. She lived in a society shrouded by blind religious beliefs and practices where women were deprived of rights and freedom, and were repressed and oppressed in the name of religion. Despite her prevailing leanings toward religious beliefs and practices, she found that a powerful obstacle to women’s freedom stemmed from the misinterpretation of culturally biased religious norms, notions and intentions. She was a strong advocate for the emancipation of the society and especially women of her time. She eloquently expressed her opinion with regard to religious rituals, prevailing sentiments and general public psyche in practice that hindered the progress and emancipation of women as well as the society. Her opinions, propositions, criticisms, and activisms in this regard surprisingly resembled to a great extent that of the predominant Marxist views. In this article, her views and opinions on the dissemination and practice of religious teachings and rituals in the context of the marginalization of women as well as society have been examined and compared with that of the Marxist thoughts, especially those on religion through textual analysis and Marxist allusions


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