Materiality of the Female Body and the Partition Fiction
Sridatta Nirjharinee
Material Memory, Partition fiction, Thing Theory, Woman’s body
It’s well known that the Partition triggered one of the bloodiest upheavals and horrendous chapters in history. These uncouth acts reflected the mindset of the patriarchal community wherein women were considered objects of honour. Partition violence situated women as objects of possession and vehicles of communication of reprisal between opposed groups of men. Across the borders, while villages were plundered and burnt, women were mutilated and sexually tortured, and trains crossing the border were found full of dismembered bodies. In the Partition fiction, woman’s body has been discussed in larger concept of nation. In fact, the concept of “woman as nation” has been a cliché of the Partition scholarship. But this paper will explore how female body has been treated as an object. It will investigate the parallel treatment of non-living things as objects and women body as objects in the selected partition narratives where both have monetary and exchange value. The paper argues that during the Partition, women body was treated as an object or to use Appadurai’s concept as commodity (having exchange value). This study will draw on Arjun Appadurai’s “The Thing Itself”, The Social Life of Things and Brown’s “Thing Theory” to read short stories like Khol Do and ThandaGoshtby Saadat Hassan Manto, Lajwantiby Ravinder Singh Bedi, and works of fictions like Ice- Candy Man by BapsiSidhwa. It will employ the theory of Material Memory and Thing Theory to study the violence against women during the partition.
Article Details
Unique Paper ID: 158880

Publication Volume & Issue: Volume 9, Issue 10

Page(s): 883 - 887
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