Notes on Anil

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Anil by Ridjal Noor
Themes Dreams of the future Relationships/ Family – the role of each member of the family Culture Childhood Violence Guilt Repression Fear Love Shame Superstitions: Lack of Education? Morality – what is right/wrong Treatment of women Justice Plot A boy, Anil, lives in Malaysia with his mother & father, who is a bully to his family, but timid & respectful to his employer, the Headman. It is night-time and he is asleep in a hut with his parents. He needs the toilet but doesn’t want to wake his father & suffer a beating. However, he sees people outside and discovers the Headman’s brother, Marimuthu hanging a woman, at which he is traumatised. The next day, the body has been taken down and we learn that it is Marimuthu’s wife. However, Marimuthu is pretending that his wife has commited suicide. Anil tells the village & the Headman that he saw Marimuthu kill the woman and the Headman goes off to talk to Anil’s father about him. In the next section, we learn that Anil is being sent to school (a great opportunity) but it is so that the Headman can cover up his brother’s actions as a murderer. At the end, both father & son explore their decisions and whether they made the right/wrong choice given the consequences. The last scene shows the Headman & his brother, the Headman smiling at his brother and the brother showing relief that they got away with it. Form • • Omniscient narrator – allows us to learn the feelings of each of the characters – an overview of the story. Short story bildungsroman: shows the character growing up/maturing when he learns the nature of good/evil and something about morality, “I will never forget this town and the sin that it buries today.” (line 216)as a child, we believe in right & wrong and that sins are punished. However, he learns that there is not always justice in the world, and in fact sin is metaphorically buried.

Epiphany: as above: “I will never forget this town and the sin that it buries today.” (line...
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