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Presentation 1 the postmaster

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  • 1. Prepared by: MAHADI KAMALUDIN (G1228277) DELL/KIRKHS ENGL7008 COMPARATIVE WORLD LITERATURE PRESENTATION 1: RABINDRANATH TAGORE: SELECTED SHORT STORIES Prepared for: PROFESSOR DR. MOHAMMAD A. QUAYUM THE POSTMASTER The Postmaster Rabindranath Tagore Translated & Introduced by: Professor Dr. Mohammad A. Quayum
  • 2. PREAMBLE  Summary  Theme  Literary Criticism Theories  Characters & Characterization  Issues  Important Lines
  • 3. Summary  This story revolves around the life of a postmaster who is appointed to hold the post in the small village of Ulapur.  Originally from the busy city of Calcutta; tries to adapt his new lonely life in the remote village.  Managed to get a friendship & companionship from an orphan girl name Ratan until the girl is „attached‟ & „„dependent‟ on him.  Decided to leave Ulapur after he recovered from his fever.
  • 4. Theme 1. Sense of Belonging & Separation ~The Postmaster: to live in the city/ mother, elder sister & elder brother ~Ratan: to remember her family/ mother, father & little brother 2. Companionship ~different caste/socio-economic status ~level of education ~generation gap 3. Reciprocal Relationship ~both lonely-chat, eat & spend time together ~call the Postmaster “Dada Babu” – parental figure ~teach Ratan how to read
  • 5. Literary Criticism Theories 1. Marxist Criticism: Marxist criticism focuses on how works mirror complex historical, social & cultural realities and in its concentration on the plight of the marginalized in society ( Schmidt & Crockett,2009). ~ “He was assisted in his housework by a destitute orphan girl, in return for a little food. (p. 1)” – master & servant ~„Ratan would be sitting on the doorstep and waiting for that call, but she never came into the house immediately.‟ (p.2) – loyal & obedient ~ „Dada Babu, will you take me to your home?‟ „How could I do that!‟, said the postmaster with a laugh. He never bothered to explain to the girl why it is not possible. (p.5)‟ –
  • 6. 2. Post Colonial Criticism: Post colonial criticism focuses its attention in two directions: at literary texts currently being produced in former colonial regions, to discover the ways in which they respond to the impact of colonialism and its aftermath on their cultures, and at canonical texts to discover evidence of colonial themes. ( Schmidt & Crockett, 2009). ~The title of the short story: The Postmaster; no proper noun is used for the main character except Dada Babu > social position represents superiority/class/caste. ~The was an Indigo factory nearby and, using his influence, its English proprietor had managed to get a post office establish. (p.1) – source of change
  • 7. Characters & Characterization 1. The Postmaster: ~early 20s-not married, the youngest in his family (like Tagore) ~educated/privileged background/high caste ~lack in social skills: confused or arrogant. (p.1) ~feel alone & exiled-expresses happiness with poetry 2.Ratan: ~around 12-13 years old, the eldest in the family ~orphan/illiterate ~innocent/naïve about different gender relationship & marriage customs
  • 8. Issues 1.Reality of Life: “Separation & death are a recurrent fact of life. What is the point of going back? Aren‟t we all solitary on this earth? (p.7)” BUT the reason the Postmaster wants to leave the village because he wants to be closer to his own family members. Solitary? 2.Hope: Ratan hopes to be apart of the Postmaster‟s life; changed how she addresses the Postmaster “Sir do you need any
  • 9. 3. India‟s traditional marriage customs: close interaction between the Postmaster & Ratan- lead to misunderstanding to others-Ratan has reached the appropriate age of marriage- child marriage is common in Indian at this period of time. „The prospects of her getting married soon looked faint‟ (p.1)
  • 10. Important Lines 1.„Occasionally he wrote poetry expressing romantic sentiment of happiness…sensitive person‟s life would be revived again‟ (p.1) Postmaster‟s temporary loneliness. 2. „An odour emitted…complaining repeatedly to the world‟ (p.3) ~ Symbolizes the Postmaster expressing his loneliness. 3. The young Ratan was no longer a little girl… „Are you feeling a little
  • 11. Reading & References Ashcroft, Bill, Gareth Griffiths and Helen Tiffin, The Post Colonial Studies Reader, Routledge: London and New York, 2006. Quayum, Mohammad, trans. Rabindranath Tagore: Selected Short Stories, New Delhi: Macmillan, 2011. Schmidt, Jan Zlotnik & Crockett, Lynne, Portable Legacies, Wadsworth: Cangage Learning, 2009.
  • 12.  ~~ Thank You ~~

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