The god of small things by Arundhati Roy
There is a lot of beautiful writing in this novel, but the rambling fashion in which this story is told makes it difficult to keep the characters and their timelines straight—we jump back and forth in time for no reason that I can see.
The inequality between the genders isn’t just about the fact it takes place in India. It’s also a testament to the era in history in which part of the story is told. For example, Ammu’s parents think education is wasted on a girl, so she marries the first man she meets after only knowing him a few days. After they’re married and she gives birth to fraternal twins, she realizes just how much of alcoholic he is. Too much of a drunkard to hold down a job and support a family.
The fact that a male, Estha, likes to cook and clean up after himself and serve himself seconds rather than getting a female to do work for him is frowned upon. Women who aspire to anything with themselves beyond taking care of children and husbands were frowned upon, but it wasn’t all that different here in America in 1969. For reasons I can’t fathom, we’re STILL not paid the same as men for equivalent work.
This is a unique and intriguing novel
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