Discuss the quality of innocence in the narrator of Bapsi Sidhwa's Cracking India.
Lenny, a Pakistani woman, narrates Bapsi Sidhwa's novel as an adult looking back at her childhood experiences. In her grown status, she is not innocent, but she recognizes the crucial ways that innocence—or perhaps more accurately, naiveté—influenced her behavior during the period she considers. The eighty-year-old girl’s lack of understanding of the adult world, including the class and gender divisions that structured it, affected not only her but those close to her. The adult’s reflections are saturated with nostalgia and, to some extent, regret.
The years that Lenny looks back on constituted the period when most of the Indian subcontinent, formerly subsumed into the British colonial “Raj,” became independent and was divided into India and Pakistan. This period, which began in 1947, is sometimes called Independence but more often Partition, referring to that division and the widespread violence that accompanied it. Much of this was based on religious differences, as the...
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