Tuesday 24 June 2008

A Thousand Splendid Suns

"One could not count the moons that shimmer on her roofs,or the thousand splendid suns that hide behind her walls."
Just finished reading Khaled Hosseini’s ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’. I am not attempting a book critique here. Just jotting down some of the thoughts, which stuck me, while reading it and also while pondering over it post reading. The book is striking to say the least. While reading the book, at times I was wondering whether Khaled is a man or a woman. At the risk of invoking the ire of world men I felt Khaled is too sensitive to be a man! I have read ‘The Kite Runner’ and loved it, but with this book Khaled has reached a whole new level of story telling and sensitivity. Some lines of this book would always be immortalized in my mind like-- ‘Like a compass needle that points north, a man’s accusing finger always finds a woman.’ When you think about it, it’s so true that it kind of takes your breath away.
Another idea that kept recurring in this book was the concept of “Nang and namoos--- honour and pride”. It is really ingenious how men all over the world and especially South Asia has over centuries politicized and moralized women’s honour. What is honour actually? Why is women’s honour so important? Ask women and they would sound really vague about their honour but ask a man about some woman in his family’s honour and he would be ready to kill. Isn’t it time men left us women take care of our own honour?
Time for decolonization.

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