Delineation of Inner Spaces and Angst within Amrita Pritam’s Pinjar and Bapsi Sidhwa’s Ice – Candy Man: A Comparative Stance

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Urwashi Kumari


The recent women writers from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh exemplify the issue of gendered self – representation and feminist concern. Their works realize not only the diversity of women but the diversity within each woman. They are incorporating their experiences to make new, empowering image for women, instead of limiting the lives of woman to one ideal; they push the ideal towards the full expression of each woman’s potential. Indian land is known for its unity and diversity. It has been a witness to the most horrific as well as terrible atrocities that have ever been committed in the history of humanity. The harrowing situation of women during partition has been quite popular among the literary writers. The present study tries to delineate the wounded soul of women during the partition of India in 1947. It has described the condition of women as delineated by Amrita Pritam in Pinjar and Bapsi Sidhwa in Ice – Candy Man. The paper aims to present a comparative study as to how both the writers share different perspectives of women during partition in their masterpieces – Pinjar and Ice – candy Man respectively. In both the novels we get a clear glimpse of the atrocities of partition and the ultimate tragedy shattering the lives of women across the boundaries. Both the novelists have described the pangs of women’s suffering in a realistic way. Amrita Pritam has tried to present an Indian identity in her description of Puro’s journey of transformation from Puro to Hamida, her loss of identity and agony while on the contrary Bapsi Sidhwa has given her own description through the character of Ayah, who was kidnapped by the Ice – candy man. 

Though both the novels centre around the theme of partition and the plight of women, their struggle and suffering due to the perpetrators of violence either in the name of culture, religion or societal norms during partition, the writers have tried to analyse the situation in their own way. Of course in presenting the condition of women during and after the partition both the writers have the same views. However, Sidhwa has delved deeper by depicting the trauma in a more realistic way through her feminist lens. The present paper intends to present a comparative stance of both the characters – Puro on the one hand Ayah on the other in term of pangs and trauma they suffered in the hands of their near and dear one’s against the background of partition.


Published: Nov 14, 2022

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Transnationalism and the Languages/Literatures of the Global South: South Asian