The Opium Wars, 1839-1842 and 1856-1860
Sea of Poppies is the novel set prior to opium war, on the bank of the Ganges and in Calcutta. The author compares the Ganges with the Nile, the lifeline of the Egyptian civilization attributing the provenance. He portrays the character as poppy seed is emanating in large numbers from the field to sea, where every single seeds uncertain about its future. The main characters in the novel are Deeti, a mulatto American sailor, Zachary Reid, an Indian raja or zamindar called Neel Ratan Halder and a venerator opium trader, Benjamin Burnham. Deeti is a simple and ordinary village woman, who comes from a poor family. Wife of a drug addict person, Hukam Singh. His lascivious brother, Chandan Singh, who was eying on her, when failed to succeed in his goal, wanted her to be cremated alive with her husband’s funeral pyre. Meanwhile, a low-caste Oxen-driver, Kalua, who has secret affection towards her, rescued, and fled away.
Sea of Poppies is a historical novel, densely packed and wonderfully written. Ghosh skillfully crams in as much information as possible without sinking the story under its own weight. The main subject is migration, of indentured servants. The forces that propel their lives the British occupation; the opium trade; the caste system are portrayed in depth. The novel throws light on the time period when the East India Company forced the peasants, to turn over their fields to opium production, for amassing unimaginable wealth, which causes poverty and hunger among the people. British merchants exported opium to China illegally and as a result the opium trade spreads rapidly, and a big mass of China’ population became habitual users of drug. In order to end the opium trade a war was waged. The first opium war was fought between the United Kingdom and the Qing Dynasty of China. It's 1838, and Britain is set on maintaining the opium trade between India and China as a buttress of its... [continues]
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(2010, 10). Amitav Ghosh's Sea of Poppies: a Study Post Colonial Perspective.. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 10, 2010, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Amitav-Ghosh-s-Sea-Of-Poppies-A-440506.html
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