V.S.Naipaul’s “An Area of Darkness” is a semi-autobiographical account of a year he spent in India in 1964 in which he describes the country from his outlook. The book is written in the first person narrative voice and Naipaul uses descriptive passages very well to outline his themes. The title ‘’An Area of Darkness’’ refers to India and many of the negative aspects of the Indian culture is highlighted and Naipaul seems to see the whole bleakness of the culture at every stage. Naipaul gives the reader a vivid insight into the various sects and cultural systems dominating India. Naipaul analyses the whole colonial process and there is a copious references to the Hinduism and Muslims and Buddhism and he paints some vivid pictures of the various customs, which the people engage in.
Naipaul description of India is impulsive and anecdotal. His description is his observation and is based on his assessment of the Indian characters as romantic, emotional and exotic, which is typical Western orientalist bravura. Naipaul describes India from four points of view – poverty, caste, defecation, and failure. But Naipaul being Naipaul manages to transform the squalor of the world he observes into clean, cold and lucid prose. Naipaul says that poverty is a key aspect of Indian culture and he contributes a good deal to the reason why he chose the title for his book. Naipaul abounds in his story the extreme poverty of the Country and says India as “the poorest country of the world”. He analyses in a very logical way the reasons why he thinks poverty exists in such a real way in India. He mentions in one stage how divorce of the intellect from the body labour has made of us the most resource less and the most exploited nation on earth’. Naipaul abounds grim and rather depressing images of poverty of the country in his book. Naipaul describes his paying a trip to a village who in order meets one emaciated Ramachandra who is surrounded in dire poverty he is appalled and simply...
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