Best News Network

Author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s new novel explores courage and solidarity in sisterhood

Author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s new novel explores courage and solidarity in sisterhood

One day, a kantha work saree was kept on author Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni’s office desk at the University of Houston. She did not know who it was from or why it was there. But the same saree would eventually propel her to write her latest novel Independence (published by Harper Collins India). Like a handspun kantha saree, the book weaves the dramatic embroidery of India’s history, West Bengal’s diaspora, the women artisans and their imagination. 

Kantha art of West Bengal is created by the women of the region and is very important for their sustenance, creativity, and artistic growth. Especially in times of difficulty, this is something they fall back upon, and that’s true in the novel as well,” says the author who was recently in Chennai at The Chambers, Taj Coromandel, for the book launch.

The book’s cover has a picture of raised kantha work and comes at a time India is celebrating 75 years of independence. Chitra was in conversation with author and translator Nandini Krishnan.

As the conversation unfurls, the author’s fiery illuminations fill the room. “As a child born into free India, I took independence for granted and my mother wanted me to understand that a lot of people gave up a lot of things, including their lives, in order to gain this freedom,” says the author.  

The novel revolves around the life of sisters Priya, Deepa and Jamini. Set against the tumultuous Partition years, the fierce sisters grapple with their dreams, love, and loss, as the roads ahead keep changing unannounced. The book contains some autobiographical elements. The character of Nabakumar is loosely based on the author’s grandfather. Known for creating compelling women characters, Chitra, in Independence, presents the audience with equally sensitive and layered male characters who lend colour to the plot. Chitra explains, “My other books are women centric but in this one, the relationship between men and women becomes problematic for each other. Not because they don’t love each other but because they love one another. They become something that the woman has to choose over other things. So a lot of the drama comes out of difficult choices women must make related to the men in their lives. “ 

Independence also explores the contours of a woman’s quiet courage against the backdrop of India’s tumultuous history. The woman here is one who has been left behind. It explores “The kind of price the woman has to pay when men go off to be heroes”, adds the author.  

When asked about what independence means today, the author lays emphasis on the need for secular and peaceful environs. The conversation came to a close with a rendition of Rabindranath Tagore’s Ekla Chalo Re (If no one walks with you, you will have to walk alone) crooned by Hemanta Mukherjee. The song is poignant because Chitra says, “This is a lesson that the women in the story will have to learn because the title has a dual meaning. These women have to learn what it is to be independent and sometimes it means you have to walk alone.”

Stay connected with us on social media platform for instant update click here to join our  Twitter, & Facebook

We are now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@TechiUpdate) and stay updated with the latest Technology headlines.

For all the latest Life Style News Click Here 

 For the latest news and updates, follow us on Google News

Read original article here

Denial of responsibility! NewsAzi is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.