Vol. 4, Issue 6 (2018)
Caste system and patriarchy in Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things
Abstract: Arundhati Roy is the most important contemporary Indian novelist who wants to change the world by raising voice against the existing injustice, discrimination and convention of the society which try to marginalize human being into nothingness, repress and control individual’s identity in a boundary. The injustice that the untouchables face, the insult and abuse women have to tolerate and the trials and tribulations the defenseless people have to undergo in a caste-ridden and patriarchal society like India, become the major concerns of Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things. The cruel treatment of untouchables in society is just an extension of inherent cruelty which is visible in its treatment of women and other defenseless persons. Roy portrays the miserable condition of the Paravans in Kerala who converted to Christianity. Roy brings out the atrocities against a woman in a patriarchal society. Women have been portrayed as objects of oppression, subjugation, domestic violence and discrimination in Indian society. In fact, the novel is a saga of sadness where love is concerned to loss, death, un-fulfillment and silence, in a caste ridden and patriarchal society. It is set in a traditional Keralite society, where God decides every individual’s fate; gives punishment through death and silences if anyone tries to transcend its laws, customs, and conventions.