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Reviewing John Masters Novel 'Venus of Konpara'

November 14, 2011  by: Madan G Singh  Points: 15   Category: Others    Views: 549

john Masters was an Anglo Indian writer who brought the Raj alive in his books. He wrote "Venus of Konpara' which is one of his best novels

         

John Masters was an Anglo Indian writer who brought the Raj alive in many of his books. A master story teller he would pick diverse themes and illustrate them by his stories. Venus of Konpara was his last book on India and the Raj and was published in 1960.

In this book John recounts a masterful tale and brings out the clash between the old and the new. He also differentiates between Dravidian culture and the Aryans in his own inimitable way. But at the same time he advocates synthesis of cultures, both Dravidian and Aryan.

The story which is set at the turn of the nineteenth century when the Raj was in full sway is also a love story. The book does breathe sexuality and concerns the love of a Dravidian girl dancer with the Aryan prince of an imaginary kingdom. The Prince who comes after education from England wishes to build a dam and a cricket field in an underdeveloped part of his kingdom.

When the work commences a beautiful statute of a woman dancer is discovered. The beauty of the statute gives it the name of Venus of Konpara. John Masters builds plots and sub-plots with the British resident, the uncle of the Prince and the tribal's of Gond. It is a thrilling tale and the Dravidian girl engrosses the prince as never before. Ultimately she marries him and that is Johns answer to a distinction between the Dravidian and Aryan races.

The book has its passages of sensuality as John describes the nude Indian Classical dance done by the girl dancer before the prince. But all in all it is an engrossing tale. John wrote many other books but 'Venus of Konpara' illustrates his love for India. John Master in this novel brings out the Aryan and Dravidian motifs. He also refers to tigers, forest fires, and poison arrows. The poison arrow kills the British resident in the book. The novel is set in South Central India of that time, where the Gond tribal's held sway. Perhaps John had visualized the setting in the modern state of Chhattisgarh.

John Masters as a story teller is par excellence. His prose is simple and the style racy. In contrast to his other popular book Bhowani junction, Venus of Konpara is an equally significant work. We must salute this Anglo Indian writer who made India and the Raj come alive in his booksglo Indian writer who brought the Raj alive in many of his books. A master story teller he would pick diverse themes and illustrate them by his stories. Venus of Konpara was his last book on India and the Raj and was published in 1960.

In this book John recounts a masterful tale and brings out the clash between the old and the new. He also differentiates between Dravidian culture and the Aryans in his own inimitable way. But at the same time he advocates synthesis of cultures, both Dravidian and Aryan.

The story which is set at the turn of the nineteenth century when the Raj was in full sway is also a love story. The book does breathe sexuality and concerns the love of a Dravidian girl dancer with the Aryan prince of an imaginary kingdom. The Prince who comes after education from England wishes to build a dam and a cricket field in an underdeveloped part of his kingdom.

When the work commences a beautiful statute of a woman dancer is discovered. The beauty of the statute gives it the name of Venus of Konpara. John Masters builds plots and sub-plots with the British resident, the uncle of the Prince and the tribal's of Gond. It is a thrilling tale and the Dravidian girl engrosses the prince as never before. Ultimately she marries him and that is Johns answer to a distinction between the Dravidian and Aryan races.

The book has its passages of sensuality as John describes the nude Indian Classical dance done by the girl dancer before the prince. But all in all it is an engrossing tale. John wrote many other books but 'Venus of Konpara' illustrates his love for India. John Master in this novel brings out the Aryan and Dravidian motifs. He also refers to tigers, forest fires, and poison arrows. The poison arrow kills the British resident in the book. The novel is set in South Central India of that time, where the Gond tribal's held sway. Perhaps John had visualized the setting in the modern state of Chhattisgarh.

John Masters as a story teller is par excellence. His prose is simple and the style racy. In contrast to his other popular book Bhowani junction, Venus of Konpara is an equally significant work. We must salute this Anglo Indian writer who made India and the Raj come alive in his books




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