South Asia Stories Question A1

In Premchand`s stories, “My Big Brother” and “The Shroud”, there are attempts to create unique paired characters. The most vivid and thought provoking of the two paired characters is between the father, Ghisu and his son, Madhav, in the story of “shroud”. Ghisu and Madhav have a unique way of evading work. To explain their laziness, Premchand explains how they stay all day idling, how Ghisu takes three days off after working for a day, and how Madhav takes an hour`s break to smoke, after working for half an hour. To explain their greed, the author explains how each desists from checking on Buthiya, Madhav`s wife for fear of losing the roasted potato, and continues to explain how they burn their throats and tongues, instead of waiting for it to cool (Premchand 234). Unlike in “My Big Brother” where we get much of the elder brother`s character, “Shroud” brings into focus both characters, their fears, weaknesses and traits. The first person narration in “My Big Brother” limits characterization of the narrator, and dwells mainly on the elder brother. However, “Shroud” unveils the traits of both characters as greedy, lazy, irrational and miserable.
Question B 2
In the story of Zulu and Chekov, Rushdie has a symbolic representation of western influence on the eastern culture. Despite the characters looking misplaced in the context of the story`s setting, the author ensured that their presence influenced a reflection on the actual issues taking place in India, and the mask that prevented the Indian revolutionists from identifying the source of their problems. Through the characters, the author brought forward resilience, struggle and determination. Just like in the TV series, Chekov and Zulu are portrayed as being responsible for unveiling the truth about the prime minister`s assassination. Working alone, and in disguise, the two contribute to unmasking the real political wrangles between the western nations and India. According to Rushdie, while Chekov makes oral statements, Zulu conducts ground investigations in order to identify the issues happening in their country (155).
Works Cited
Premchand, Munshi. “The Chess Players” and “The Shroud.” The World of Premchand: Selected Short Stories. Trans. David Rubin. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2001. Print.
Rushdie, Salman. East, West. Toronto: Knopf Canada, 1996. Print.