Sunday, May 22, 2016

Ghachar Ghochar

I read this short novel, translated from Kannada to English, at one sitting and loved it. It has captured the change in lives of middle-class Bangaloreans beautifully and yet, it's honest..I say honest as it's difficult to write about the uglification of  Bangalore and make it sound beautiful.
Shanbaug is the first person I have read, who has so accurately penned, the jumbled emotions, thoughts, and vague feelings of guilt, the current two to three generations of middle class Bangaloreans experience. The sentiments of the characters is exactly what many of us had. He has articulated the thoughts, emotions and mixed up confusion of a sensitive but inarticulate people. 
Reading this, I am sure , the immigrants to Bangalore and the new generation of Bangaloreans will understand the agony  of transition their parents. underwent. To me, Ghachar-Ghochar is like a combined effort of sociologists, anthropologists and psychologists  translated  into a highly readable novel.
Below are some excerpts from the novel which resonated with me.

...The well being of any household rests on selective acts of blindness and deafness....
...The only decent person in this family is your father but the rest of you behave like he's insane...this sentence validates what I have felt for several years!(the honest people look crazy but the corrupt appear normal in current society is what I said in an article of mine)
...and let's face it, there is a vast difference in the moral underpinnings of a business family and the household of a salaried teacher....
...No one asked questions when he boasted that government officials were friends of the SMC.....( I could not have expressed this better!)
 ...but then it is the duty of the family to preserve my self-respect!

I strongly recommend all to read this short novel.  I am planning to buy more of them and distribute to my friends and share the joy of this book.

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