Brief Account of V.S.Naipaul’s Description of India in His Book ”an Area of Darkness

1461 Words Apr 18th, 2012 6 Pages
V.S.Naipaul’s “An Area of Darkness” is a semi-autobiographical account of a year he spent in India in 1964 in which he describes the country from his outlook. The book is written in the first person narrative voice and Naipaul uses descriptive passages very well to outline his themes. The title ‘’An Area of Darkness’’ refers to India and many of the negative aspects of the Indian culture is highlighted and Naipaul seems to see the whole bleakness of the culture at every stage. Naipaul gives the reader a vivid insight into the various sects and cultural systems dominating India. Naipaul analyses the whole colonial process and there is a copious references to the Hinduism and Muslims and Buddhism and he paints some vivid pictures of the …show more content…
Naipaul describes India with several stories and anecdotes about his time in India. He opened the book with a little exploration of the often Byzantine if not Sisyphean paperwork and bureaucracy of India, describing his trials and tribulations of simply trying to import a bit of alcohol to the dry port of Bombay. He describes Bombay that it was not the city he had expected to be, Prohibition-dry, bearing whisky and cheap brandy, he experienced a cultural estrangement from the country. He said that he hated to be the part of a crowd at the Church gate station and craved for preferential treatment, something that he had always got-in Trinidad. In India he found no special attentions of the Indians. He described groups of sweepers who cleaned a set of stairs; after they worked with twig brooms, rags and buckets of dirty water, the stairs and walls are not only not cleaner but dirtier than ever. However they fulfilled their function, which was to sweep, or rather to be sweepers. According to Naipaul, actual cleanliness was not the issue. He says that the Indians have been known to be picnicking on the banks of a river while some drowned, not lifting a finger to help. He writes that the Indians do not lack courage or an admiration for it, but rather see courage and the choice to risk one’s life to save another the function only of soldiers. Attempts to save government jobs for untouchables is not lauded, as this merely in many Indian’s eyes simply puts

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