Scrutiny of Self in Arun Joshi’s The Strange Case of Billy Biswas
Keywords:Civilization, Self-identity, Individualism, Primitive
An Outstanding novelist of human predicament, Arun Joshi is ranked with the great masters of contemporary Indian fiction in English. He believes that reality lies within the consciousness of isolated individuals. As he is the great writer of psychological perception, he envisions the inner crisis of the modern man in his five novels. In particular, his second novel The Strange Case of Billy Biswas is the apple of his eye. It portrays the story of the protagonist who is dragged by the mysterious world of the tribal society. The protagonist, Billy’s strange quest leads him to leave his position as the sole inheritor of a wealthy family and lead to live a natural life. There is no comfort in his American life as well as in his marital life too. Further, the story visualises Billy’s quest for individualism and self-identity at the cost of leaving materialistic world. This paper focuses on the clashes between the civilised world and the primitive one as well as it looks at the root of the protagonist Billy’s quest for the self.
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