Analysis Of Such A Long Journey By Rohinton Mistry

Decent Essays
‘Such a Long Journey’ is a 1991 novel by Rohinton Mistry. The novel was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and won numerous other awards too. However, it came into the light when the book was withdrawn from the syllabus of the University of Mumbai's English Literature in 2010 after complaints from the family of the Hindu nationalist politician Bal Thackeray. In this light, a renowned writer Salman Rushdie points out that:
The famous novel of Rohinton Mistry's 'Such a Long Journey' was withdrawn from the syllabus of Mumbai University because local activists objected to its plot.

The title of the novel is taken from the poem of T.S. Eliot “Journey of the Magi”: A cold coming we had of it, Just the worst time of the year For a Journey, and
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Rohinton Mistry’s ‘Such a Long Journey’ is a wonderful novel discussing the position of minority in the Indian society. As far as India is concern, the major religion here is Hinduism and other religions are minor, be it Parsi or Muslim. The life for these people is ‘grave’ and that is what Mistry tries to showcase in the novel. The novel, set against the backdrop of 1971 Indo-Pak war, involves the tragedy of the main character Gustad, ruining all his hopes by the situations out of his control. Mrs. Priyambda Singh notes:
Such a long journey is from the writer Indian Diaspora who settled in Canada. It discusses Mistry’s huge concern for the Parsi’s in India as he wants to develop this sector of post colonial India.
Mistry is a social novelist in every sense and this element finds an apt expression in this novel. However, his sociality and socialism come from the personal experience of being a Parsi which is minority in India. His position is like an external tool not internal in the Indian society, full of ‘Hindus’ Avdheskumar singh, in this light, observes
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Such respect we used to get. Now the whole atmosphere only has been spoiled. Ever since that Indira nationalized the banks”. - Such a long Journey

Papiya Bhattacharjee notes that: “This novel is a strong support to the corpus of Parsi fiction in English.” The anxiety and the worry about the Parsi community expresses clearly and directly in the novel.
The novel is a social criticism and Mistry, being an outsider (thought he is of Indian origin) fearlessly expresses the Indian customs and conventions. Rohinton Mistry himself has said, as Anjali Roy observes: Many people take it an arrogant of me as I am not living in Bombay and still writes about such things, they believe I don’t know much about the situation, but I think I believe I do know as much as they do. This is memory, and when I say memory, it always memory plus imagination, which creates an altogether new memory- Rohinton Mistry

He gives what is ‘real’ in the true sense of the word. In this respect M. Mani Meitri notes:
In such a long journey Rohinton Mistry emerged as a realist as far as the realistic treatment is concerned. He provides the realistic picture of the Indian conventional society without any

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