The God of Small Things

Growth, Confusion, and the Loss of Innocence: The Differing Roles of Childlike Narration in Roy's The God of Small Things and Faulkner's The Sound and the Fury

One, a story about culture, class, family, and love laws, follows the lives of a pair of twins in Kerala, India as they learn one fateful December day how drastically "Things Can Change in a Day." The other, a story about suicide and incestual desire, tells of the fall of the Compson family from four different perspectives. How can these two seemingly different novels - The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner and The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy - possibly be related? In both novels, the reader finds himself reading a childlike account of the events that come to pass through the course of the novels. The lack of insight, limited use of modifiers, and simplistic sentence structure of Benjy's section and the phonetic spelling, whimsical adjectives, and interspersed lines of children's songs of The God of Small Things both serve to present the reader with childlike descriptions of the stories. However, they differ not only in the level of insight reached by each of the narrators by the conclusion of the novels, but also in the purpose of the childlike descriptions. In contrast to Benjy's childlike narration that creates a sense of confusion within the reader that parallels his confusion, the...

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