Question of Woman Identity in the Characters of Anita Desai with a Special Emphasis on In Custody
Keywords:Patriarchy, domination, skeptical, discourse, appropriation, abrogation
Patriarchy is the name of a global effect of domination made possible by a myriad of power relations at the micro-level of society. With this knowledge in mind, Anita Desai seems to have adopted a skeptical stance towards the modern discourses on emancipation that have a claim to universal truth and to represent the Archimedean leverage point from which the society can be moved. Rather she has made an attempt at focusing on the power relations at the micro-level of society without giving privilege to a general theory and a single locus of resistance to Patriarchy. In her fiction, she has resurrected the subjugated knowledge she, like a genealogist, has located many discontinuous individual women’s struggles against different forms of power in different patriarchal societies. These struggles are mainly organized from two post-colonial strategic positions: appropriation and abrogation. As a corollary of this, her female protagonists, equipped with oppositional consciousness and sometimes endowed with a vision of an alternative world, are found to selectively either appropriate or abrogate different social institutions and cultural practices to serve their personal ends.
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