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Dynamics of Politics and Poetics of Home: A Study of Manju Kapur’s Home


The territory of the home is not only regarded in terms of physical space but also in terms of human affection and influence. The status of women within the social structure of their families and/or communities is paralleled as well as informed by their position in the physical structure of their houses and homes. An Indian woman is yet to seek an identity as a human being with equal status in the family in which she is born and in the family to which she is given in marriage. This research attempts to make a study of Manju Kapur’s novel Home to reveal many issues deeply rooted within a family and explore the dynamics of relationships that prevail in an Indian home. Nisha, the protagonist in the novel, tries to subvert age-old traditional norms and values of her home, which is symbolic of Indian society in microcosm, that threatens to subvert her existence as an individual. Manju Kapur’s women contest and defend their domestic territories because they are contesting not only for power, but for their self-esteem, identity and individuality.  The home obviously is a gendered living space of an everyday life, and that young Indian women are not accepting traditional roles conferred by ‘home’ onto them passively; instead, they seem to be (re)traditionaliszing their strategies of housework and childcare responsibilities.  Through this paper we wish to highlight that change in the traditional roles played by women in homes reproduces dynamics of politics of home thereby enhancing dynamics of poetics of home. The study of politics and poetics of home further analyses how the relationship between women and men as well as ideas about masculinity and femininity are shaped by the intersection of tradition and modernity. The study explores a dialogue between tradition and modernity with an aim to project yearning for autonomy and separate identity. Kapur poignantly shows the evolution of an Indian woman in the midst of the repressive patriarchal structure of an Indian home.


Home; Space; Patriarchy; Tradition; Modernity, India


Author Biography

Dr. Gyanabati Khuraijam

Assistant Professor & Head,
Dept. of Humanities & Social Sciences,
NIT Agartala.


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