Could you please summarize the story "Girls" by Mrinal Pande?

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rareynolds eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The story is about an eight year old Indian girl who is traveling with her pregnant mother and female siblings to her grandmother's house, and is told from the eight year old's perspective. The action of the story is pretty low-key: it tells with some detail about the rail journey of the family and the trouble the narrator gets into playing pranks on her siblings. Her mother is especially irritable; in addition to looking after three children and managing a difficult rail trip, she is pregnant with her fourth child, which she fervently hopes will be a boy. This introduces the main thematic element of the story, which is the devaluation of women in Hindi society. Although the narrator is only eight, it is apparent to her that she is considered a "pest" primarily because of her sex. For her part, the mother scolds the narrator because she too must "bend" to accommodate the males -- the mother's subjugation is explicitly sexual, in that she must continue to have children until she gives birth to a boy. The narrator understands that, if things are bad now for her, her mother's example holds little hope for improvement in the future.

The story ends with the celebration of Chaitya Shukla Ashtami, a Hindu holiday when young girls are worshipped as incarnations of Devi, or the divine feminine spirit. Part of the celebration involves all the girls wearing a red tikka on their foreheads, but the narrator refuses. Why pretend to worship girls on one day, she says, when you hate them on all the others?

trilliumblue7 | Student

The story 'Girls' deals with the way Indian women is treated in our society. it basically tells us the unjustified idolatry of the male child and a woman's sensitive perspective and the hypocrisy of some rituals. it shows us how we treat women in our modern society. the whole story is narrated by an eight year old girl, who is the second daughter of a middle class family. her mother is a very irritable person, as she is going through her fourth pregnancy, and fervently hopes that it's a boy this time.

mishramanish | Student

The theme of Girls is oppression of girls in indian societies.Here the unnamed girls unwillingness to accept herself as a trouble.she retaliates to the hypocracy of  the society by which abuses the woman in the society wheareas pretends to worship woman on the another is a social releavent and unjustified favour towards the male child in the indian society.the whole story is narrated by an eight year old,who has an irritating mother going through her fourth pregnancy and desires a boy this emphasises the kind of torture some indian woman faces during her childhood days,in some or rather in all societies in india more or less.