- Copertina flessibile: 264 pagine
- Editore: Broken Shackles Press (1 agosto 2012)
- Lingua: Inglese
- ISBN-10: 0988112205
- ISBN-13: 978-0988112209
- Peso di spedizione: 463 g
Across the Sabarmati (Inglese) Copertina flessibile – 1 ago 2012
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Sriram Ananth is a healer, writer, and wannabe mama elephant leading a liberatory, albeit scatter-brained, life between Canada, India, and the US. This is his first novel; a cathartic narrative inspired by his experiences as a human rights worker in Gujarat during the fascist violence that rocked the state in 2002.
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Le recensioni clienti più utili su Amazon.com
The book is a harsh and no-hold-barred one. Sriram Ananth has not pulled any punches. His views, seemingly black and white and/or 100-0 have come through very strongly. May not be easy reading or palatable but exactly what is required to portray the genocide, that is what it was. The book seems to be auto-biographical and cannot be dismissed as hyperbole since facts are facts. Enough proof of these facts was provided last week in the Gujarat High Court.
I think the only thing the author missed was to provide a starting point with the Godhra incident, which itself was a terrible act of savagery. However it is clear that Sriram has wanted this to be a strictly personal account: As such, Godhra might have been out of place.
I am sure if another book was written about the thousands of Sikhs killed during 1984 at New Delhi, the same three reviewers would have blasted that book, using probably different psedonyms. In India, portrayal of facts, if not in favour of the privileged Hindu middle-class are often put down harshly.
A very difficult, but very essential read. Do not miss it. A reader need not agree with the views of Sriram Ananth: it is their inalienable right, not to agree, but READ, ONE MUST.
The protagonist, who seems to be an autobiographical stand-in for the author, is there as a relief worker, charged with interviewing victims of the genocide, and distributing relief supplies. During the course of the book, he falls in love with a co-worker, starts chain-smoking, begins heavy drinking, and generally transforms from a mild-mannered, upper-caste Brahmin into a vitriolic, left wing activist, with very strong views on everything from bigotry to the role of women in his society.
As a history lesson illustrating man's inhumanity to man, the book gives compelling evidence in the way of first-hand interviews with victims of the atrocities and the frustration of the residents of a refugee camp left in the wake of the wave of violence that left thousands homeless and mourning their butchered family and friends.
As a story, however, the book plods along, with Jayram, the main character, becoming more and more self-absorbed, to the point that for the last third of the book I really disliked him. His immaturity and inability to focus on his obligations -- to his "love", Maria, and, to some degree to his friends and coworkers and their cause -- robbed him of the reader's sympathy and, frankly, detracted from what I believe was the book's unstated aim: to promote awareness of the atrocities in that region of India, and to illustrate the corruption of the ruling party during that time.
It does show -- vividly -- what can happen to a young idealist thrown into the midst of a strife-torn area, as Jayram goes numb to the cause he signed on for and, to some degree, to his friends. Perhaps this was the author's goal all along -- to let the reader become invested in the central character and then tear him down to his bare, all-too-human essentials of callousness and hatred of himself. If this was the case, he succeeds, and the book becomes just another coming-of-age story, albeit set in a brutal environment.
Other mean-spirited reviewers have trashed the book, disputing the author's portrayal of events in Gujarat. Indeed, a Google search of the term "Gujarat genocide" brings up different views on who was behind the killing and just how complicit the police and authorities were at the time. Nevertheless, the end-result remains the same: a tortured populace of beleaguered Muslims who must now make do with handouts and camp squalor -- a sad situation for one of the world's largest democracies.
I'm giving the book four stars because I believe it is a useful read that helps raise awareness of just what extreme bigotry and class warfare can do, even in a so-called "civilized" society. But if you're looking for an action tale, or even a story that holds your interest for the full 264 pages of shrill, leftist rantings, this is not for you.
The book is a fictionalized account on the aftermath of the Godhra riots of early 2000s. Like all first time authors, he has s
lightly extreme views on the issue ( you need not have to agree with the author's point on the riots to read and enjoy the book) but the book is a must read from another point of view away from the riots / who did it and why etc.,
Read this book as the journey of a young man safely cocooned in the upper middle class upbringing of cosmopolitan Bangalore and his discovery of his real self and what he stands for . The Godhra riots is only a back drop for this. I am not sure if the author intended it this way.
The author demonstrates an excellent fluency with the English language and the book moves like a well made movie - event to event. Terrific output for a first time author...Read it and if you have teenage children...make them also read it....hopefully it will instill in them the alternative value that there is more to life than only becoming materially rich ...and force them to think of life in a holistic way encompassing relationships, empathy, issues of class and identity...More power to you Sriram...and we look forward to your next offering.
Kudos for such a nice maiden novel.
I am sure Sriram will be very successful not only in his future literary ventures but also in his life in general.