Mulk Raj Anand Untouchable


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Inhaltsangabe zu „Untouchable“ von Mulk Raj Anand

Tells the story of an Untouchable in India's caste system, with an introduction by Ramachandra Guha, author of Gandhi Bakha is a proud and attractive young man, yet none the less he is an Untouchable - an outcast in India's caste system. (Quelle:'Flexibler Einband/02.01.2014')

Stöbern in Sachbuch

Kann weg!

Typisch Fröhlich. Lustig und kurzweilig. Nur eine kleine Kritik: Die Männer bekommen ungerechtfertigt sehr undifferenziert ihr Fett weg.


Mit Gobi durch die Wüste - eine wahre Geschichte

sehr emotionale und berührende Geschichte


Unsere unbekannte Familie

Ehrliche Kurzgeschichten über unsere tierischen Freunde, die zum nachdenken anregen.


Generation Kohl

Amüsanter und sehr persönlicher Bericht aus den 80ern, als wir alle noch nicht online waren;)



Gefährlich spannend


Das geheime Leben der Seele

Sehr gut für den Einstieg ins Thema Seele


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  • Rezension zu "Untouchable" von Mulk Raj Anand


    Ein LovelyBooks-Nutzer

    11. September 2009 um 21:41

    “'Untouchable' could only have been written by an Indian, and by an Indian who observed from the outside. " (1) This quotation shows the point of view given by E.M. Forster in the introduction to the book 'Untouchable' published by Penguin Books. He also adds that it was very important for Anand to be an observer of these living circumstances. The troubled situation of an outcaste, more precisely a so named Untouchable, was the only way to design an author’s notation like it is given in the text and that characteristic style of the novel. Being an Untouchable, the writing would have been influenced by “indignation and self-pity” (Forster VII). The question to raise is how Anand created his protagonist. Bakha, the elder son of a family of four that lives in the outcastes’ colony, is part of one of the lowest social groups in the Indian caste system – he is a sweeper. Furthermore, the novel is in its entirety told from his perspective. There are just some short pan shots to his sister Sohini, and also here the problem of attitude, behavior and reflection on the own social status remains the same. Anands book takes place on one day, attends Bakha’s first thoughts when he is awakened by his father’s shrieks that he has to clean the latrines, accompanies the protagonist into the city where he meets the higher caste people and there gets into trouble. Out of the prospect of Bakha the needs, thoughts, fears and daily considerations can be lived through by the reader as well. In regard to the attitude the father Lakha has about their status in the society the statement given by Forster is more understandable. When Bakha comes back from the city, Lakha feels at once that there is something wrong about him. Bakha is quite dispirited because of all the abuses by different, to him unknown people. His father than tells him that he just has to accept the fact that they are sweepers; that they are destined to clean up the dirt of the higher castes, that there is no other way than just approve it. He even asks his son: “Why weren’t you more careful, my boy?” (Anand 79). Another fact to reveal is the questioning Lakha starts on his son. He himself knows the problems of being a sweeper, going around every day in the city and having to shout the parols “Posh, posh – sweeper coming” that are sort of self-contamination. But Lakha reminds his son of his caste and the duties around this fact. Lakha accepts the system and even defends it before his own flesh and blood, yet when Bakha tells his father that Sohini had been molested by the pundit in the temple. He argues that they are their superiors: “We must respect them and do as they tell us. Some of them are kind” (Anand 80). By reeling up this cardinal problem in this way and showing the mere differences between the generations, the arguing by Foster that only an outsider and observer of these disproportions in a society can narrate them is very plausible. The narrator of the story describes a status quo in a society that runs deep into religious self-conception and traditional living. In the public and in literary critics the reception (by readers, critics…) and the real author are as important as the topics the novel deals with. Like Coetzee has been incriminated for his point of view in the novel Disgrace for writing about the situation in South Africa and that he himself as a white man was not in the position to write about discriminating black (native) people, a likewise reaction could have been expected by publishing a book written by an Untouchable. The neutral social status is nearly the only possibility to create an indifferent starting point to develop a story with all factors that count in this situation; as well as it had to be narrated with the needed caution. Mulk Raj Anand was in the position to absorb the former way of thinking like Forster explains in his preface as well. With all the cultural empathy Anand had due to his own biography, he could create a simple and emotional rich character that followed his doom and in his artlessness reflected on the contemporary situation, trying to understand what he was living through. 1-E.M. Forster, “Preface”, Untouchable, author Mulik Raj Anand (London: Penguin, 1940) VI.

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