HUNGRY TIDE AMITAV GHOSH PDF
Author: Amitav Ghosh The Turning Tide: A Novel of Crosspointe · Read more · D'Arcy McNickle's The Hungry Generations: The Evolution of a Novel. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. One doesn't so much read Ghosh's masterful fifth novel as inhabit his characters and the alluring if. A LYOTARDIAN READING OF AMITAV GHOSH S THE HUNGRY TIDE Madhusmita Pati Ravenshaw University, Cuttack, Orissa, India. Kailash Nath Interfinet.
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𝗣𝗗𝗙 | In the wake of religion's influence in the climate discourses gaining Amitav Ghosh's The Hungry Tide termed as a "canonical text for. PDF | This paper argues that literature has much to contribute to the To this end , it discusses Amitav Ghosh's The Hungry Tide (), a novel. The Hungry Tide: A Novel [PDF] Download; 2. Book Details Author: Amitav Ghosh Pages: Publisher: Mariner Books Brand: English ISBN.
Her earliest memories of Bengali centre on her parents arguing in that language. Language for Piya is signified by absence and presence. The writer contrives this rebirth for Piya by having her fall into the river accidentally pushed into it by the corrupt guard of her boat while on the expedition searching for the Irrawaddy dolphin.
From near death by drowning she is rescued by the incorruptible, illiterate fisherman, Fokir, who refuses all but a single note of the money she offers him as compensation for the money stolen by the guard. The waters of the river may be likened to those of the womb but they also symbolise the move away from the fraudulent world of the official guard.
While water symbolises the female element, in this case, the water is not clear, it is disturbed and so is Piya as she fights against it in panic. He gives her life as in the end he will give his life for her. This serves underline the plea for interco The name Fokir 11 resembles the Hindi word Fakir 12 which describes a man who has renounced the world to live with the barest minimum in order to be closer to god and away from the materialism of the world.
The image on this island is that of the good mother, for they emerge into a clearing that houses the shrine to Bon Bibi and her brother, Shah Jongoli Fokir has taken her to his special place of worship letting her into the inner sanctum of his being, his centre.
Fokir has come here because his dead mother, Kusum, has requested him to bring his son for her to see. Therefore, while she is seen through the eyes of the other, she, too, sees with the eyes of the outsider other. Though she senses the fear aroused by the tiger that lurks within the forest of her unconscious, she does not feel the need to merge with the other yet.
Flowever, the lack of words renders impossible the true depth of the experience for her. The writer uses Piya is to learn to love him, too. She will be torn between the lungi-clad, wordless fisherman who is close to nature and the worldly translator in his western garb, who, ironically, is to be the one who interprets the words and songs of the other man.
But it is to the man of words, Kanai, that she discloses the incident which had made her lose her confidence in men and turned her inwards Fokir becomes the other for both Piya and Kanai. For Piya, Fokir is the Other that she longs for but cannot merge with. Kanai wants to be the one that Piya loves and that is Fokir. The writer creates the situation to fit naturally into the narrative We are told that Fokir has been dreaming that he will soon join his dead mother and he loses his life sheltering Piya from the ravages of the cyclone, which destroys the shrine at which he used to worship.
The fulfilment of their sexual desire would not have brought either of them closer to the other.
She was briefly united with the uneducated Fokir who gives his life for her, but she is brought back to safety by the education that enables her to read her scientific instrument. The traditional knowledge that comes with experience is safeguarded in this instrument of globalisation. The two women he loved are drawn together by his death. The two begin to resemble each other as they sit silently side by side. It is, f Kanai is visiting the same area to collect and read a diary left for him by his late uncle Nirmal, an idealistic, Marxist intellectual in the Bengali tradition.
Hamilton happened to be a close associate of Rabindra Nath Tagore and shared his vision of village reconstruction and cooperative societies. With a utopian vision to set up a society where people would shed their atavistic baggage of custom and prejudice and avail the blessings of modernity, he started the first embankment estate in the Sundarban. The attempt by this Capitalist Hamilton to set up a socialist society in rural Bengal, however, crumbles down with decolonization.
See Weber, Page As one of the characters—Kusum puts it: A life time of toil, in a city of rust?
She came and defeated the established demon spirit Dokshin Rai and made possible human habitation in Sundarban. Kanai, the quasi-modern global entrepreneur stands as an intermediary, as a translator between Piya who does not know Bengali and illiterate Fokir, who does not understand English. Both the tigers and human beings live in precarious balance in this water and mud country. The story records the degeneration of two Grand Narratives in postmodern India— one of Indian nationalism of the Indian nation-state and the other, of the Western Climatologists.
The Hungry Tide: A Novel
In other words, this meta-narrative is the generic foundation for understanding Modernity and Enlightenment. Unfortunately, this has rather become a legitimation crisis of the expectation and evolution of modernism.
It has neither evolved the way it had been perceived and imagined in the West.
Nor has the non-Western world replicated or resembled the Western way. On the other hand, it has become a diluted and distorted space where layers after layers of impositions from above burden the stakes of marginal refugee communities. And yet others throw new light on old paradigm or theory We adhere to this later approach.
See Malpas, P. Geertz conducted extensive ethnographical research in Southeast Asia and North Africa and his theory is still very influential in turning anthropology toward a concern with the frames of meaning within which various peoples live out their lives.
THE HUNGRY TIDE (2)
This is the same legitimation crisis that we allude to in the paragraph above on theoretical departure. Lyotard, P. VII 12 Theda Skocpol employs such insights and methods using multiple case studies, for example, the role of overarching power of States like that of France, Russia and China.
In adopting post-modern assumption, we employ this bottom-up approach to assess the spirit and aspirations of the marginal—engage in looking deeper into micro-narratives or Little Narratives.
And at the next level, we argue for a deeper and more analytical understanding of the Local Narratives so that these in turn could explain the failures of Grand Narratives and their impositions from above. Here we side more with Lyotard than Habermas. Skocpol, P. On the other hand, this prods Lyotard in the opposite direction—that is, to visualize art as the benchmark of sublimity beyond modernity in order to fragment, rupture and expose micro or Little Narratives and celebrate the collapse of Grand Narratives.
For former, art is the great conciliator, for the later, it is the great destroyer, great harbinger of new dimension of thoughts.
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For details see texts of Kant. A good recapitulation is in Maplas, P. In this context, few years back, cancellation of World Bank loan for development of greater Tibetan plateau is laudable. Realists claim that it is our perception of reality as it is out in the world.
For example, they would argue that Weberian Sovereign State is a reality. Whether this Grand Narrative of the Sovereign State has its sway over the entire population within the boundary of a State—for right or wrong—does not matter.
These theoretical departures will be more pronounced and clear as we get into it in a later section with implosion of more empirical meanings into the situation of the marginal and their world of Bon Bibi and Dokshin Rai in the Sundarban. For example, Wittgenstein claims that both Darwinian Logic and arguments of Genesis have relevance to human situation. There are two different language games here. For scientists and people interested in the Origin of Species, Darwin is more relevant.
For the people who seek solace in the prayers and meditation, believing in Genesis is more important.
One should not intrude into the other. It is the spirit of the situation and context that is more important to understand complex human situations like that of the marginal than one language game imposing, intruding, distorting or dislocating the other Maplas elucidates: Lyotard follows the Kantian distinction between facts and values and argues for the danger of basing ethical decisions on ideas about the reality of the state of affairs.
Maplas, P. Thus Maplas claims in the Differend: III Ghosh, while internalizing the facts and fictions of colonial and post-colonial history19 in The Hungry Tide, encapsulates the way the marginalized or homeless refugees confront several layers of authorities and legitimacies: At the first level—is the colonial regime itself and the English colonial capitalists like Sir D.
At the second level, in terms of the legacies and transition of power to the just carved up Nation-States of South Asia, the elite frittered away millions of refugees towards marginalization and homelessness in the context of partition of the subcontinent into Pakistan-East Pakistan and India and several contiguous States.
In addition, there is a fourth and preeminent layer of the Climatologists, now in the guise of Westernized perceptions, policies and strategies of Al Gore and Rajendra K Pachauri et al trying to impose their vision in far off natural reserve sanctuaries like Sundarban. Piya, the American visitor is an apt representative of the Grand Narrative of the so called Climatologists of the West. The western perception of climate change faces twin challenges: On one hand, on the strand of ecology, the Climatologists of the West and their counterparts and followers in the guise of the State elites have established scientific consensus to prevail and conserve nature and its animal species.
See Amitav Ghosh in Conversation, Hence, at the core of this conundrum, is the ethical dilemma between the ecological needs and the human needs Using The Hungry Tide as a podium and thought of Amitav Ghosh as it relates to Morichjhapi and other incidents, we go a step further to refine the postmodern ideas as they have been played upon the turf of developing societies in postcolonial era.
We contend that Postmodernism has several overlapping and different dimensions, for example: The scenario of immediate contestation and convergence between colonial masters Westernized structural ambitions to make the newly independent territories become like them.
And the pedigree of the Westernized elite of the inherited developing countries as it has transitioned to the State administration and its elite. Lastly, the intricate details of the local culture and society that have survived on their own terms despite the colonial and State dispensation and their impositions to distort and dislocate. Amitav Ghosh has succinctly argued in one of his interviews: Amitav Ghosh, thus, in line with the Kantian philosophy21, considers it his moral imperative to demonstrate how environmentalism and conservation quests have their own costs and we are often left without an answer when we ask ourselves the question--What is more important — conserving forests for animals or allowing humans to live?
Their sense of identity and belonging is all scuttled when such arbitrary imposition happens; some are compelled to choose one side and others choose on their own volition. The thing to notice here is that, India remains the center piece of attraction for the migration of the refugees in the records that historian Ramachandra Guha alludes to in a recent article.
The so called democratic, secular and tolerant multi-lingual, multi-ethnic and multi-religious credentials of India have been attractive to some 25 million refugees from the neighboring seven South Asian States See Op-Ed piece by Ramachandra Guha, The Telegraph, 15 Nov.
Of course, human agents also have subjective impulses—desires and inclinations—that may contradict the dictates of reason. Perception and predicament of each character is different. Despite her theoretical data, technological devices and determination, Piya finds herself trapped, first in a postcolonial bureaucracy HT, PP.
The Hungry Tide
While Hamilton's endeavor becomes successful, the British government's labor of having a settlement on the banks of the unpredictable Matla River proves disastrous HT, PP.
In both cases the humans claim land from water, and the river rises up to claim the land, people and civilization. As part fiction and part its relation to reality, Ghosh has interpreted the facts of late s, simulated the reality and wove it into a narrative to present the experience of these marginal who have been displaced some three times—from Bangladesh to Sundarban, from Sundarban to Rehabilitation Camps in Central India and from these land-locked Rehabilitation camps back to Sunderban —and are still looking for their place, silenced and suppressed from time to time by the history and diktat of the so called State.
It was to sit here, helpless, and listen to the policemen making their announcements, hearing them say that our lives, our existence, was worth less than dirt or dust.
The Hungry Tide
We have become alert to difference, diversity, the incompatibility of our aspirations, beliefs and desires, and for that reason post-modernity is characterized by an abundance of micro-narratives.
See Lyotard, Postmodern Condition…pp. The bigha varies in size from one region to another; in India it is generally less than an acre 0. In Bengal both in Bangladesh and in West Bengal, India the bigha was standardized under British colonial rule at square yards 0.
See Miles, P. Who are these people, I wondered, who love animals so much that they are willing to kill us for them? Do they know what is being done in their names?
Where do they live, these people, do they have children, do they have mothers, fathers? As I thought of these things it seemed to me that this whole world has a become a place of animals, and our fault, our crime was that we were just human beings, trying to live as human beings always have, from the water and the soil.
However, neither the intimidation of State authorities nor the Royal Bengal predators barging into human habitat made the people abandon the land.
The Little Narrative of Bob Bibi bound these marginal to the land. The narrative had been created "from elements of legend and scripture, from the near and the far, Bangla and Arabic. The indigenous water people invoke her protection while entering into wilderness. But indulgence is earned by the observance of certain rules.
Villagers are not supposed to expose any sign of physical human penetration as it would invite retribution from the demon and that is what one of the characters, Horen, meant when he advised Nirmal before landing in the island of Bon Bibi shrine: The most important thing to note here is the prescription to control human greed. In order to have balance between human and animal species, there has to be limits to human need.
If one has food, one must not go hunting—such is the cardinal guideline of Bon Bibi myth. Amitav Ghosh in one of the interviews with Ahmede Hussain expresses that though myth may be fictional in nature but it is about life, about society and it is these myths that restrict complete break from the past to the modern or from the modern to postmodern The point is: In other words, do they need to do away with these myths that restrict complete break from past in order to metamorphose into the modern or postmodern?
Sunday, February 24, We want to reiterate our point here that we do disagree with Habermas. And that these mythical Local micro-narratives provide the clue to the life-line, meaning and identity of the facts of coexistence or rivalry between marginalized humans and predator animal species. These Little Narratives need to fester and replace the Grand Narratives of the State and the Global, than the other way around.
Conclusions One of the major concerns these days is that despite more than three decades of heavy expenditure of enormous sums of money on eco-conservation sites and displacement of thousands of marginalized refugees from these pockets, the population of tigers has abysmally dwindled in India. By one of the recent census estimates of Project Tiger, the tigers have been completely wiped out from some national parks.
When Sundarban was declared as a Tiger Reserve for Royal Bengal Tigers in with prodding and promises of funding from the global environmentalists at the World Bank and other organizations, the tiger population was about After a good spurt in s to about 3,, it has diminished to almost 1, in Petersburg, Russia, November , , where, the predicament of tiger population of the world seemed so dismal. There have been concerns expressed at the summit to make sustained efforts to double the tiger population by — the tiger year in Chinese calendar.
The irony is, it is feared, that by itself the entire tiger population of world will perish if we go by present day trends. The point that we have been trying to drive at through this entire article is that both State level efforts and Global or international indulgence in the form of Climatologists and climate change have done much more harm to conservation of tiger and at the same time have been trudging along the marginal, displacing and hounding them from the tiger sites.
In other words, here the same debate that we have introduced the article with, delving deeper with theoretical postulates and empirical data from Sundarban, leads us to conclude that celebrating and prioritizing Local over the State and Global helps us to discover more humanistic and pragmatic solutions to the ecology vs.
Nevertheless, we make a strong push to understand the nuances and pulses of Local Narratives e.
As James C. Scott will remind us in similar contexts, Seeing Like a State28 through the Grand Narratives of modernity projects must make way for indigenous solutions to the plight of marginalized refugees making them co-terminus with the needs and sustenance of animal habitat around. We have to have sincere and diligent efforts toward making both animals and human marginal part of a holistic and sustainable eco-system—not prioritizing one category over the other or not making both mutually exclusive in a zero sum game.
References 1. Dutta, Nandana. Reading Literature in Nationalism in Literature Classrooms. Ghosh, Amitav. The Shadow Lines. Ravi Dayal Publisher. The Hungry Tide. Narratives of Nature and the Politics of Forest.The settlers of the Sundarbans believe that anyone who dares venture into the vast watery labyrinth without a pure heart, will never return.
This is the tide country, home to the Bengal tiger, huge crocodiles, sharks, snakes, impenetrable forests, and a few people trying to scratch out a living. It's a fascinating subplot that explores the collision between different kinds of idealism. The local people called the Sundarban bhatir desh—the tide country. Malpas, Simon. The sight of the lunar rainbow breaks something between them filling them with the nameless pain that comes with the knowledge that we cannot be part of the Other for it is beyond us.