Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Kim - Rudyard Kipling

This was my first read of Rudyard Kipling...Kim-A typical literary classic..The book is a mixture of  adventurous journey and spirituality..Kimball O'Hara is an Irish-English boy who born and brought up in Lahore (It was in India before partition)..Despite having English origins,he grew up as a native   Indian boy..He speaks fluent Hindi and very much familier with the Indian culture and traditions .He is a secret spy to the british govt. and takes part in a 'Great game'..He carries messages to a horse dealer called Mahabub Ali of Umballa.Once a Tibetan lama comes to Lahore in search of the magical holy river of healing.Kim very much fascinated with the holy man and serves him by becoming his 'Chela'..They travel through Indian landscapes across many places..The Lama sponsers Kim's education in Sahib's (english) school named as St.Xavier's..Finally the spiritual journey of Lama comes to an end by finding his river of arrow,that is salvation..And Kim's destination is left to the readers anticipation.

Copy right A Homemaker's Utopia 

Kim's living and learning described in the following manner..

The country born and bred boy has his own manners and customs,which do not resemble those of any other land;and his teachers approach him by roads which an English master would not understand..

'Kim' portraits the typical Indian living of country side and the relations of Britishers with Indians.There are glimpses of racism too..The book is a blending of British,Muslim and Indian cultures.The book also mirrors the life style of Indian women at that time..They are talkative,shy and love cooking and serving.Being an Indian I enjoyed the usage of hindi words and Indian proverbs in the prose..Like 'Nut-cut','Pahareen','kismet' etc etc...There is a funny usage of the typical pronunciation of  Indians for some english words like "Te-rain" for Train...

Here  is a wonderful description of Mumbai at that period..

Bombay'the queen of all-more beautiful in her garish style than Lucknow,whether you see her from the bridge over the river,or from the top of the Imambara looking down on the gilt umbrellas of the Chutter Munzil and the trees in which the town is bedded.Kings have adorned her with fantastic buildings,endowed her with charities,crammed her with pensioners,and drenched her with blood.She is the centre of all idleness,intrigue,and luxury and shares with Delhi the claim to talk the only pure Urdu..

Coming to the negative points-I gradually lost my interest as the adventures of Kim turns boring...The language used by Kipling is very tough...I need to refer for meanings often..It is certainly not an easy read,One needs so much patience..And I feel the author failed to show the real Indian cultural beauty...The journey is mostly occupied with plenty of conversations..Some times it is confusing to find out who is speaking actually..:-) The spying game was quite boring for me..Anyways I'm having a very bad habbit of reading every book till the end If I start it once..My expectations were too high as the novel based on colonial India...But its a disappointing one for me...

13 comments:

Ranjana's craft blog said...

Very interesting... should include in my reading list

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Ranjana,
Thanks for ur comment.Yeah interesting but very very slow book..All the best..:-)

Anonymous said...

It was a awe-inspiring post and it has a significant meaning and thanks for sharing the information.Would love to read your next post too……

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Anonymous,
Thanks for dropping by..Pls keep visiting..:-)

Arun said...

Thanks for your post. I have bought this book, a year before, and haven't read it. Will read it soon now.

తృష్ణ said...

good intro..!
Kiplingవి short stories చాలా బావుంటాయి. నవలలు నేను చదవలేదు...:(
ప్రఖ్యాత సినిమా "జంగిల్ బుక్" తను రాసినదే. మీకు తెలిసేఉంటుంది..

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

@ Arun,
Thanks for taking time and commenting..I finished this books in 2 months..lol..very slow,but worth reading once..:-) All the best..:-)

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

తృష్ణ గారు,
ఇది కిప్లింగ్ మొదటి పుస్తకం నాకు...బహుశా ఎంచుకున్న పుస్తకం తప్పేమో.నాకు పెద్దగా ఎక్కలేదు.చాలా బోర్ కొట్టింది..:-(...ఆయన షార్ట్ స్టోరీస్ ఏమి చదవలేదు...తప్పకుండా చదువుతాను.Heard about Jungle book too..Thanks for your lovely comment..:-)

lalithag said...

I enjoy your paintings. But I have been waiting for a post about a book from you. It is finally here :)
As much as I enjoyed and still enjoy Jungle Book, I heard something about a great Indian leader (I don't remember the name) was offended by the way he wrote about India in a book and said he would have thrown away the book if it was not a borrowed one. in childhood.
I think Man Eater is also by him. We had that as non-detailed in school I think. That too seemed interesting to me and not very offensive at the time.
Your review of this book is interesting. It makes me want to read, but after reading some more of his short stories perhaps.

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

Thank you for ur sweet comment Lalitha gaaru..:-) I have been to my home town so the reading was kept aside for some time.I haven't read any Kipling's short stories..Will definitely try to read..And Yes we definitely feel some sort of irrespectable and funny writing towards Indian people,their kind of living and especially the language...But I feel his ignorance in understanding Indian soul can be forgivable as he is a foreigner.There is nothing to take seriously about insulting our culture..Thank you once again for the nice comment..:-)Pls keep visiting..:-)

Abhyudaya Shrivastava said...

Interesting. Looks like a book *I* would pick up from the shelf! Although would never be able to finish it

A Homemaker's Utopia said...

ha..ha..Thanks a lot Abhyudaya for dropping by.Infact,I too tried hard to finish this book..:-) It give a test for ur patience for sure..:-)

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