Bakha is a young man, proud and even attractive, yet none the less he is an outcast in India's caste system: an Untouchable. In deceptively simple prose this groundbreaking novel describes a day in the life of Bakha, sweeper and toilet-cleaner, as he searches for a meaning to the tragic existence he has been born into - and comes to an unexpected conclusion. Mulk Raj Anand poured a vitality, fire and richness of detail into his controversial work, which led him to be acclaimed as his country's Charles Dickens and one of the twentieth century's most important Indian writers.
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Mulk Raj Anand, one of the most highly regarded Indian novelists writing in English, was born in Peshawar in 1905. He was educated at the universities of Lahore, London and Cambridge, and lived in England for many years, finally settling in a village in Western India after the war. His main concern has always been for "the creatures in the lower depths of Indian society who once were men and women: the rejected, who had no way to articulate their anguish against the opressors." His novels of humanism have been trabnslated into several world languages.
The fiction-factions include Untouchable (1935), described by Martin Seymour-Smith as "one of the most eloquent and imaginative works to deal with this difficult and emotive subject," Coolie (1936), Two Leaves and a Bud (1937), The Village (1939), Across the Black Waters (1940), The Sword and the Sickle (1942), and the much-acclaimed Private Life of an Indian Prince (1953). His autobiographical novels, Seven Summers (1950), Morning Face (1968), which won the National Academy Award, Confession of a Lover (1972) and The Bubble (1988), reveal the story of his experiments with truth and the struggle of his various egos to attain a possible higher self.Review:
One of the most eloquent and imaginative works to deal with this difficult and emotive subject -- Martin Seymour-Smith It recalled to me very vividly the occasions I have walked 'the wrong way' in an Indian city, and it is a way down which no novelist has yet taken me -- E. M. Forster
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