Those who read my last post must know by now that today’s novel will be a Bengali novel, written by revolutionary author Sarat Chandra Chatterjee. The novel is Parineeta which means previously married. Those who are familiar with Indian movies , this name must be ringing a bell in their ears.
For those who are not familiar with the story I’ll provide a short summary:
The novel begins with Gurucharan a bank clark, getting the news of the birth of his fifth daughter. A few days later he brings his niece Lalita , a 13 year old orphan home. She slowly adjusts with her new surrounding. She is best friend of Charubala . Gurucharan’s neighbor is Mr.Nabin Roy and family, who are wealthy and the family head is a wicked man, always deceiving poor people whom he lends money with high interest. His youngest son Shekhar takes an instant liking to Lalita after she arrives. Now the specificity of the novel’s name comes to light when Lalita, Charu , Shekhar were playing childish game with dolls and they get married. All of this being part of the game they didn’t mind. As the story develops so does Shekhar’s love for Lalita. In the meantime a new character is introduced in the story Girin who is Charubala’s uncle and her mother’s young cousin. He’s nearly Shekhar’s age. A very helpful person, he helps Gurucharan turn into a Brahmo so that he doesn’t have to pay dowries for daughters. Shekhar was out of town for a few when Lalita’s marriage with Girin is fixed, after returning he learns of that but doesn’t ask her anything. They don’t see each other for many days. Both Gurucharan and Nabin Roy are dead .Shekhar feels Lalita is married but story later is revealed when Girin says Shekhar that he already knew of the marriage, she had told him everything and you cannot marry an already married woman, as was the custom those days. Shekhar told his mother the entire story and the lady who had always adored Lalita like her said daughter is happy to have her at home.
Now lets begin our discussion about the characters:
She was thirteen at the beginning of the novel gradually she grows up. She’s beautiful, a little outspoken lady. Adored by everyone..Shekhar’s mother asks her to call her Ma. She is optimistic, that was she chose to tell the truth about her and Shekhar’s marriage to Girin.
Shekhar – He is the protagonist and youngest son of Nabin Roy, though the eldest is mentioned only by name. He is twenty five years old and has a master degree. He works as a teacher. He is deeply in love with Lalita . He is an obedient son , a faithful friend. He wants to marry Lalita but is restrained by social customs and his father.
Girin – He is another important character of the story. It is because of him that story turns into a love triangle at times. He is a university student and as earlier mentioned the uncle of Charu. He is a Brahmo and convinces Gurucharan to be a Brahmo as well, so that during his daughters marriages he is spared from paying large dowries. He is a wise person and thinks about social good.
This was all for today’s character discussion. For next week I was wondering if we could discuss on “Outsider” but then it came to my mind that ” Jane Eyre” is not bad either. So which one do you think should we put on the shelf next week?