- Paperback: 216 pages
- Publisher: Eka (16 December 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9388754875
- ISBN-13: 978-9388754873
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.5 x 21 cm
- Customer Reviews: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,585 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Amma Paperback – 16 Dec 2019
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About the Author
Perumal Murugan is the author of eleven novels, four collections of short stories and five anthologies of poetry in Tamil. Three of his novels translated into English— Poonachi: Or the Story of a Black Goat, Trial by Silence and A Lonely Harvest —were shortlisted for the JCB Prize for Literature in 2018 and 2019. The other six novels translated into English include Seasons of the Palm, shortlisted for the Kiriyama Prize in 2005, Pyre, Current Show and One Part Woman. He is a professor of Tamil at the Government Arts College in Attur, Salem.
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The essays are deeply personal in the way the author has taken readers to the domestic life he lived in: a father who has a small job but a big addiction to local toddy and how it leads to domestic strife and physical abuse. Any reader who has read Murugan’s work will be able to see the seeds and grains of the author’s fictional characters in his mother:her innate wisdom and knowledge of farming practices; the way she is full of heart and deep courage but still follow patriarchal stereotypical practices as dictated by society in the way she defends her husband’s vagaries and later,when her own father comes to live in her house; in the way she is practical and contradictory, taking charge of things around her.
If you love reading personal essays, there is noway that you can forgo reading this beautiful book. If you love Perumal Murugan’s writings, you have to definitely read this without fail.
Murugan takes us deep into his family’s rural, agrarian background and the arduous toiling of their day-to-day lives. Their days are filled with hard labour and his mother is a silent, unrelenting bearer of it all. She raises her children in financially strained circumstances. She tends to the cattle and the crops, gives ample time to her children even as her husband turns up drunk out of his wits every day. The anecdotes he shares make it evident that his mother was intelligent, fair, kind and fearless in the face of adversity.
Murugan’s writing is honest and simple, which is perhaps why I felt deeply touched by the book. The book is also filled with instances of deep rooted social and cultural biases that plague people of the older generation. Murugan does not shy away from calling out these prejudices. He writes from a place of deep regard and affection for his mother without compromising on objectivity expected from an author of his stature.
Read this book when you are looking for some warmth and comfort.