Cracking India Questions and Answers
by Bapsi Sidhwa

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Examine the twin themes of dislocation and sense of loss in the novel Ice - Candy Man.

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Dislocation and loss are present in Sidhwa's Ice- Candy Man, or Cracking India.  The idea that Partition is depicted as an arbitrary force, something that the British and Indian politicians designed but could never foresee the disastrous results.  The community of heterogeneous Indians that were present in Lenny's wife are all divided and separated as Partition becomes a reality in the post- British India.  The onslaught of violence that accompanies Partition creates situations where families have to leave their homes and abandon parts of their identity because of threats to the safety:  "Military trucks arrive in Pir Pindo to evacuate Muslims to safer places but the Muslim peasants are confused. They can't leave their home, property and harvest all of a sudden."  For people who are so strongly tied to land and the generations that preceded them in those areas, Partition is depicted as a modern construction that fails to take into account how individuals are connected to the concept that Partition ends up breaking:  Land.  When Ranna has to leave to find an area of safety, it is symbolic of the millions of Hindus and Muslims that had to do ths ame, experiencing dislocation and loss in the process.

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