All these stories are in different narrative forms like epistolary ( karuvu peelchina manushulu ), authorial ( moya leni nijalu ) , monologue , moving freely between interior and dramatic (valaselli paathaandaa) ,Personal ( nerlu ,cheta peyya) impersonal (sonterlu, konda siluva , vyasanam )
Chilukuri Devaputhra ,Nirmala Rani and Hidayathulla wrote with minimal or no authorial intervention. Their narrative is simple and lucid. Their narrative expression and authoritative usage of dialect completes the narration with perfection.
Narrations of Singamaneni, Chilukuri Deevena and Shanthi Naryana invite the reader to join them in a small journey .They talk , discuss, debate and feel with the people in the story and people who are reading it..
The writers have not restricted to the form in the conventional sense. The adversity and the perplexity of the drought – must be disturbing their artistic sensitivity , intellectual sensibility and authorial discipline. The disturbance within the author is visible in their narrative. At times, the narrative uniformity is disturbed. We can observe this in the following sentences.
“Suri asks me to write a story – I don’t know how and where to start a story …”
“Too many stories, Suri, how can any single story sticks on? I could not write even one story…”
These two discourses are from the same story, moya leni nijalu, that narrates mostly in the form of an anecdote, a descriptive narrative of “too many “ events, thoughts, emotions, feelings crossing one over the other .The tone is switched over to and fro. The addressee changes quickly, as in the first quotation is the reader and the second, Suri and also, both the reader and Suri simultaneously.
This is not the conventional form of story consisting of plot, people, and narrative development. This is collage of incidents and their consequences. The narrative has frequent pauses and breaks as if the pathos of the subject is echoing in the narrative style.
“The most basic problem raised by realist fiction is that of language rather than form.” Roland Barthes points out. “Since form is unavoidable in any kind of writing, the discourse, or the complex of the word superior to the phrase, has its forms of classification and a classification which signifies”
Let us examine this further.
“What pennaiah baava ,No rain.No where .By this time ,the sun might have heated up the clouds to bloom and shower raindrops. But, they shower flames on earth. By this time, crop would have been in hand , but fields swallowed the crop like snakes. What a drought it is !” said Thimmayya approaching him . – –
“This time , there were heavy rains ,in our village .Water. Everywhere . Water in the stream.
Water in the tank ..” “valaselli paathaandaa ,
We know, the anthology has some thing in common , the subject . Drought.
The above two quotations are the “ beginnings “ of two stories with different narrative styles.
The first one introduces and takes the reader directly into the subject and takes away along with it. But, the second one puzzles and raises a bit of confusion whether it is a story out of the topic and then , raises curiosity about what kind of narrative it is going to be.
The narrative techniques opted by these two writers is uniquely distinctive.
The first narrator addresses some one whose name is synonymous with river Penna . Thimmayaa is approaching .. none other than the river it self. But, the addressee is his fellow farmer.
The metaphor used for fields is “snake” the title of the story being ,The Pyhton and a clever indication of the status of agriculture that swallowed many farmers. A word that sounds vicious , poisonous ,hidden .
The casual idiomatic expression used for indicating drought is amazing.
The writer imagines the sun heating up the cloud to Bloom and that it showers flowers of rain drops. On the contrary, it rained flames. This is expressed in colloquial Telugu. Plurality and implicit nature of words are cleverly exploited. A beautiful expression and very poetic to start with. Ends with a plain statement,“ What a drought it is!”
The second beginning , is a very intelligent start. In this anthology of drought.. most of the stories begin with the indication of the drought . This different beginning makes it a special one.
In a deeper sense ,the writer crafted an ironic opening for the worst situation he is going to narrate later.
This creates the reader a kind of alternative world the narrator dreaming of .. water and water and water. The repeated usage of one word , water , emphasis the solace the narrator expecting. And the “beginning” is the clear indication of the “End “. This usage strengthens his sensible and deep narrative style.
The above two beginnings are not just ‘ real’ expressions. They are figurative, poetic and polyphonic.
But, the Realist illusionists .. see language simply as the medium of thought . One of their arguments is ,In search of “proper language of story telling” ,“ what realist fiction does threw for is to bring ground less novelty into social world.”
Let us examine this further.
“We sold fields. Sold our homes. Sold away cattle. What else is left with us, to sell?
Sold everything ! “ her heavy words suppressed her heartfelt pain , deep into her heart. (G. Nirmala Rani, katesina karuvu)
What kind of a life we lived, now we are left in such wrecked condition ! “ Nagappa’s eyes filled with tears “ I couldn’t dye , to fill my stomach , become a petty thief . Anyone may do the same ! If one hangs on rules , how to fill the stomach ?How can people like us survive? Selling her body ..how desperate must be life ‘ thoughts taken over. (G. Nirmala Rani , katesina karuvu)
These discourse extracts are from the same story in different situations. First one is a dialogues .As we can understand she is speaking to some body. And second is a monologue, thinking or brooding over . In fact, the later monologue is the reaction of the first dialogue.
In the first narration the writer uses the word ” sold “ repeatedly and one last word “sold everything “,emphasis being on everything.. the reader understand s clearly the “real” meaning without elaborated or descriptive language.
And , heart ..is used twice . This is a very clever usage of words. Very few words can narrate an entire story. This clearly shatters Nagappa whose elaborate monologue speaks the change taking in his perspective.
“The process is not a pure repetition there fore but, rather, a limited expression of exploitation of plurality of language, through a controlled process of echoing, recalling .” ..
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