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Book Review: Truthfulness and Femininity by Sarat Chandra

The writer Sarat Chandra inaugurates a huge public library at Medinipur. Following the inauguration, people engage themselves into literature related conversation. One of the gentlemen asks the author why he treats truthfulness and femininity as two different aspects. To make the point understand clearly, the writer narrates a story about a woman whom he knows since childhood.

A twelve-year-old girl, who was married to an elderly man, becomes a widow prematurely. She returns to her parents’ house, in a village. By the time she is thirty two years old, she is left alone in the world, her parents no more alive. The author calls her Didi, sister. In fact the whole village calls her sister because she works at others home in all types of events or even in the times of contingency. Soon, in the village she becomes famous for her helping nature and people reckon her as a hardworking figure with unblemished character.

She lives in a hut which is covered from the mud walls from all sides, and beside one wall stands a huge tree of Jamun. The author, being a child, plans to play a prank on her. The child climbs on the tree and hides in the dense branches well before the evening. When the darkness surrounds the village, things go silent, there aren’t any cooking fires in the sky, people proceed for sleep, he shouts Didi…Didi…in a hoarse voice with an intention of scaring her. Soon after hearing the voice a fat man quickly gets up from the cot, lying in the courtyard, and hides beneath it.

Thus, the author clarifies that it is not necessary that a woman high on truthfulness is refraining from sexual desires. Both aspects are different and women are rarely bereft of femininity. In his view both are different because each quality passes through a different circumstance to prove its mettle. 


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