Relocating ‘Self’ and Identity in South Asian Context : Divakaruni’s The Palace of Illusions

Shyam Babu


Contemporary south Asian literature howsoever, heterogeneous it may be,is underlined by the experience of colonialism and its dominance. As a literary/cultural text it seeks to debunk the Eurocentric monopoly on the one hand, on the other, it projects a tension within the South Asian (con) texts in terms of gender and caste. Hence, the experience of exclusion and marginalization is yet another indispensable dimension of south Asian region. This constitutes the social and cultural fabric in south regions. South Asian literature (SAL) thus envisages the discourse as diverse as self, identity, community, caste etc., against the European culture of the dominance and homogeneity. Pual Brain rightly observes that, “south Asian literature is a colorful kaleidoscope of fragmented views, colored by the perceptions of its authors, reflecting myriad realities—and fantasies” (Modern South Asian Lit in English, 6). South Asian literatures especially in Indian context are marked by the hegemony of caste and gender and majority/minority discourse. As contemporary Asian literary discourse builds its argument in the very backdrop of the loss,dislocation and decentralization, it is hugely significant to relocate the ‘self’ and idneity in the south Asian (con) texts.



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