☆ A Backward Place Kindle Ñ A Backward Kindle -

☆ A Backward Place Kindle Ñ A Backward Kindle -

A Backward Place ❮Read❯ ➲ A Backward Place Author Ruth Prawer Jhabvala – Centrumpowypadkowe.co.uk Six colourful, comic characters inhabit A Backward Place All but one are Westerners who have come to Delhi to experience an alternative way of life But, far from being hippies, their ability to adapt Six colourful, comic characters inhabit A Backward Place All but one are Westerners who have come to Delhi to experience an alternative way of life But, far from being hippies, their ability to adapt to this exotic culture often leaves something to be desired Etta, an aristocratic, faded beauty maintains her Parisian chic while Clarissa talks enthusiastically about the simple life but stops short of ever roughing it herself On the other hand Bal, the one A Backward Kindle - Indian protagonist, holds quite Western aspirations to Hollywood glamour A Backward Place humorously explores contradictions in attitudes and lifestyles and the interplay between culture and individuality But it is also a Dickensian drama, charting the highs and lows of everyday life against the enchanting backdrop of a bustling Indian city.


10 thoughts on “A Backward Place

  1. Susan Anderson Susan Anderson says:

    loved the characters Love Ruth Prawer Jhabvala s voice can t remember much about it except that I loved it.


  2. Ali Ali says:

    A Backward Place is a kind of comedy of manners centred on a group of westerners living alternative life styles in Delhi Judy an Englishwoman is married to Bal living in a small house and courtyard with his family Clarissa is a dishevelled artist, claiming to appreciate a simpler life, while Etta is an ageing Hungarian beauty determined to keep hold of her Parisian chic and mysterious allure Dr and Mrs Hochstadt are a German couple on an extended though temporary visit to experience India A Backward Place is a kind of comedy of manners centred on a group of westerners living alternative life styles in Delhi Judy an Englishwoman is married to Bal living in a small house and courtyard with his family Clarissa is a dishevelled artist, claiming to appreciate a simpler life, while Etta is an ageing Hungarian beauty determined to keep hold of her Parisian chic and mysterious allure Dr and Mrs Hochstadt are a German couple on an extended though temporary visit to experience India Judy s husband Bal, is a dreamer, he sees himself as an artiste and has aspirations of fame in the Indian film industry While Bal spends all day hobnobbing with his friends and dreaming up new schemes, Judy works with Sudhir Bannerjee at the Cultural Dais This was the one job Judy had been able to land after having gone door to door begging for work to support herself, her husband and their two children, along with Bal s elderly Aunt who lives with them, in the lower half of the house also occupied by Bal s brother and wife and children Clarissa and Etta meanwhile don t do much of anything Clarissa involves herself in one of Bal s latest schemes infuriating Etta by involving Guppy Etta s latest boyfriend Etta is a sorry figure indeed, longing to get back to Europe, she knows she has lost touch with it and fears being a nobody, in Delhi at least sheor less maintains a glamorous image Etta entered the restaurant and stood poised within the door She saw Clarissa immediately, but nevertheless hovered there a moment longer and pretended to be searching round She liked entering restaurants and having everyone look at her And everyone did look at her, and eyes followed her as she tripped smartly on her high heels, head held high and slim hips swinging, to the table where Clarissa sat waiting for her.Clarissa was sprawled on a velvet sofa, with her things her sketching pad, a few grubby parcels, the big checked cloth bag which served her permanently as handbag and shopping bag scattered round her Late as usual said Clarissa Following a row with Etta who is frequently vicious to her so called friends Bal turns his back on his scheme for a local theatre group and decides instead to move his family to Bombay to try his luck in the film industry Judy is not too thrilled with the idea, although she is charmed by her husband s enthusiasm Unlike Etta, Judy likes her life, her job at the Cultural Dais and her friendship with her sister in law, she is nervous of change Judy felt no gratitude On the contrary, she was critical of Bhuaji who appeared to her as irresponsible as Bal In comparison with the two of them Judy felt herself to be very adult and sensible, and very English English people didn t behave like that, they didn t on the whim of a moment give up everything they had and go wandering off in search of no one knew what That might be all right for people like Bhauji and Bal and those holy men in orange robes one saw roaming about But it was not all right for anyone English and sensible not all right for Judy She was determined to hold on tight to what she had, like her mother, like her Aunt Agnes, like all those other stubborn dwellers in little houses among whom she had grown up and who, she now decided, were her kind In A Backward Place Jhabvala gives us a humorous and engaging novel of contradictions and cultural differences India is a vast country and yet the canvas for this novel is small, the everyday concerns of this small group of people and their associates, their hopes fears and aspirations are presented amid the hustle and bustle of a large city There are several wonderfully observed scenes, like one in which Judy and her colleague Sudhir go to the home of the culturally ambitious Mrs Kaul who is in the middle of firing a girl a girl sullen but stubborn, who obviously is desperate to keep her job


  3. Maslela Maslela says:

    For me it was a simple read suitable for the start of a long train ride across countries, that was when I started reading it and finished it It s just about a bunch of westerners living the expat life in India and Judy, an English girl, trying to fit in to the life of an indian wife in a financially, emotionally, difficult situation that even us who are of indian ethnicity would not agree to All I was thinking throughout the book was how in the world did you let that indian guy fool you into For me it was a simple read suitable for the start of a long train ride across countries, that was when I started reading it and finished it It s just about a bunch of westerners living the expat life in India and Judy, an English girl, trying to fit in to the life of an indian wife in a financially, emotionally, difficult situation that even us who are of indian ethnicity would not agree to All I was thinking throughout the book was how in the world did you let that indian guy fool you into marrying him and subjecting yourself to this sorry lifestyle Love can t be that blind


  4. Meera Vijayann Meera Vijayann says:

    I came across Jhabvala s books in a used bookstore in Boston and immediately bought them But I felt that in spite of all the reviews I read about the Backward Place, it wasn t a story that stuck with me I felt that the characters were unable to move forward leaving the plot rather dry, and stagnant It s a book that s set in a certain time and because I love reading about India, I loved little references to the theatre, and cultural communities, the general yearning for fame and belonging, and I came across Jhabvala s books in a used bookstore in Boston and immediately bought them But I felt that in spite of all the reviews I read about the Backward Place, it wasn t a story that stuck with me I felt that the characters were unable to move forward leaving the plot rather dry, and stagnant It s a book that s set in a certain time and because I love reading about India, I loved little references to the theatre, and cultural communities, the general yearning for fame and belonging, and the overarching themes of post colonialism That interested me But overall, I just couldn t wait to finish this book and put it away


  5. Prashant Prashant says:

    Not sure how I got a copy of this book Looks like a library book that has traveled with us for last 15 years Finally decided to read it and it was an okay read The book is dull and slow and the characters quite simple some annoying as well but it does show a very simple life which with all of its challenges has its own charm as well.


  6. Mandy Mandy says:

    Despite having the most annoying character in any book I have ever read Bal I did enjoy the story overall In fact most of the characters were tiresome I would liken Bal to Jar Jar Binks on a scale of most frustratingly annoying fictional characters I m hesitant to give it 3 stars though, perhaps 2 1 2


  7. Heather Heather says:

    I honestly couldn t enjoy this book I m not sure why but I found the pace too slow and not enough of a story line to be interested in It s a shame but not for me.


  8. Dayangku Nuraini Wahed Dayangku Nuraini Wahed says:

    Too long winded for me I m sure there was some morale to be learned somewhere in there but frankly I m just glad I was able to continue reading it until the end.


  9. Judith Rich Judith Rich says:

    I just felt several of the characters could do with a hefty slap Starting with that lazy little toad of a husband, followed by Etta and finally Clarissa They were all so unsympathetic and really very annoying.I didn t enjoy it as much as Heat Dust I just felt several of the characters could do with a hefty slap Starting with that lazy little toad of a husband, followed by Etta and finally Clarissa They were all so unsympathetic and really very annoying.I didn t enjoy it as much as Heat Dust


  10. Olga Olga says:

    This book is quite poorly written even for pulp The plot revolves around several European characters living in India and trying to come to terms with their failed lives Some reviewer called the auther the Indian Dickens ha This scribbler s two dimentional little figurines are a far cry from the English classic s characters The writer seems to lay claim to certain expertise when it comes to human nature and habits but alas Some of the characters features are quite life like and yet th This book is quite poorly written even for pulp The plot revolves around several European characters living in India and trying to come to terms with their failed lives Some reviewer called the auther the Indian Dickens ha This scribbler s two dimentional little figurines are a far cry from the English classic s characters The writer seems to lay claim to certain expertise when it comes to human nature and habits but alas Some of the characters features are quite life like and yet this doesn t bring the names to life Instead these people are unpleasant and disagreeable I don t know about other readers but I m not one to read such fiction My favourite literature characters are gods that tread the Earth They can be vicious, lusty, vain, avengeful and yet loveable Jhabvala s characters, on the other hand, repel me The structure of the novel is ill judged indeed as it s not even clear what bit was supposed to be the climax, and the pace is sluggish The book ponders how Europeans manage to accomodate themselves to life in India and what becomes of them after a while This brings about a number of cultural clashes one of which is women s place in society In the book it s likened to the lifestyle of European ladies a century or so ago Ibsen s A Doll s house makes an appearence on the pages of the book From this point of view the book is highly unsatisfying there isn t a single strong female character throughout the book and all married women have to duck and dive to make their husband companion happy When it comes to single women, the state of matters is bordering on critical all of them are still dependent on men and in the end unhappy, evenso than the poor married darlings Shame on you, Ruth Jhabvala, if this is what you think women deserve


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