Author: Mulk Raj AnandSaros Cowasjee/Editor(s): Saros CowasjeePublisher: Penguin/VikingYear: 2004Language: EnglishPages: 726ISBN/UPC (if available): 067005819X
What is a writer if he is not the fiery voice of the people, who…transmutes in art all feeling, all thought, all experiences, thus becoming the seer of a new vision in any situation - Mulk Raj Anand The Mulk Raj Anand Omnibus is a tribute to one of the founding fathers of the Indian novel in English. Mulk Raj Anand (1905–2004) is best known for the fiery social critique contained in his writings. This special commemorative edition published on the eve of his hundredth birth anniversary brings together three of Anand’s finest novels which capture the ambivalence of a nation caught between tradition and modernity: Untouchable (1935), Coolie (1936) and Private Life of an Indian Prince (1953). Untouchable remains a modern classic in its re-creation of one day in the life of Bakha, a sweeper boy. That he is an untouchable is portrayed as his ‘fate’; there is no way out of his appalling existence as an outcast in the system. The vitality and richness of the narrative make this one of the great literary portraits of all time. Coolie recounts the adventures of Munoo, a young boy forced to leave his village to fend for himself and discover a world of his own. As his journey takes him far from home and to towns and cities, working as a servant, factory-worker and rickshaw driver, we see through the narrator’s eyes many of the unspoken evils of the Raj-exploitation, police brutality, caste strife, and communal riots. Private Life of an Indian Prince is the fascinating story of a prince who has inherited more of the vices than the virtues of his ancestors. Despite his many excesses, the maharajah retains our sympathies to the very end. Even his nymphomaniac mistress Ganga calls for our understanding. Anand’s brilliant characterization makes this novel truly remarkable.
IntroductionUntouchableCooliePrivate Life of an Indian PrinceA Select Glossary