The influence of Western culture in India as represented through the Anglophiles in Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things
Abstract: After I read the God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, I was completely taken by the story and the realistic characters illustrated in the novel. I had a hard time analyzing and comprehending the depth that this novel entails, and even a harder time in developing an essay that would be pertinent, but not as intricate as the novel itself.
Thus, the novel's social concept of "Anglophiles" stood out as a major conducting thread in all the characters, and furthermore in most of the colonized nations. Consequently, the effect of the British Empire and the Western influence on India could be easily traced in the characters created by Roy.
All of the characters in the Ipe Family are clear constructs of the Western world's influence on India and the constant need to feel accepted by disguising or becoming Anglophiles. The family of Anglophiles begins with the great-grandfather of the protagonists, Estha and Rahel. Pappachi represents the gravest example of a frustrated man, who wishes to be British because only in doing so he feels acknowledged. Pappachi's sister and his son follow in Pappachi's footsteps as they all alter themselves in order to fit the westernize standards in order to feel accepted. In addition, Pappachi's grandchildren also adopt a Westernize lifestyle, not only fitting in with the Ipe family, but with the rest of the Westernize world, they are expected to develop.
Hence, through the study of the characters, one can notice the influence of British colonization and Western ideals on the cultural Indian standards presented in the novel.
Introduction: Perhaps the least known aspect of the colonial legacy is the early British attitude towards India's pre-colonial traditions and customs, which were vastly disrupted by the Westernize influence. Instead, there is a pervasive myth of the British as an unbiased 'protector of the nation's historical legacy.' Britain was merely a "mother figure" to the weak, feminized India, which could only live and develop through the aid of Western methods.
In Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things, many of the Indian social standards and faults are criticized. More importantly, the impact of the colonial British rule is intricately illustrated as Roy weaves the complexity of an Indian Family, in their obsession of appearing British, therefore, losing grasp on the reality of their own country and culture. In the novel, the history of colonization is not greatly discussed. However, the historical past affects the characters directly and indirectly. The epoch of colonization in India is often perceived as a period of great hardship, but, as an epoch that had to be endured in order to progress. Like Bengaline historian Romesh Chunder many other historians are firmly convinced of the fact that in India the British colonization had more positive effects t...