Malgudi Days

“‘My dear father: By the time you see this letter I shall be at the bottom of Sarayu. I don’t want to live. Don’t worry about me. You have other sons who are not such dunces as I am-‘”

Suicide is a serious topic which is somewhat glossed over because it is quickly brought up and then the story is over with. This short story highlights the fact that suicide can come out of nowhere with such strong feelings attached to it. At the end of some of the stories in this novel, there are “lessons” or important topics brought up, but the loose ends are not tied up, leaving the reader wanting more. (60)

R.K. Narayan. Malgudi Days. (New York: Penguin Books.) 2006.

Malgudi Days

“Attila exhibited a love of humanity which was sometimes disconcerting.”

Narayan, R.K. Malgudi Days. New York: Penguin, 2006. (98)

Strange that they should feel disconcerted for a dog that likes them. Opposite emotions of what you would expect. Similar to “A Father’s Help” when Swami is upset that he is not being disciplined.

Malgudi Days: Missing Mail

‘No prize yet,’ he announced to him every day. ‘But don’t be disheartened.’ ‘Your interest has been delayed this month somehow,’ he said to another. ‘Your son at Hyderabad has written again, madam. How many children has he now?’ ‘I did not know that you had applied for this Madras job; you haven’t cared to tell me!’

Narayan, R K. Malgudi Days. Edison, NJ: Vista India, 2005. Print

Narayan establishes the setting by naming the streets and stops on Thanappa’s mail route. Through snippets of Thanappa’s dialogue, Narayan offers the reader insight on the kind of relationships Thanappa has with others and the type of people that live there.

Malgudi Days

“Attila was the hero of the day. Even the lady of the house softened towards him. She said, ‘Whatever one might say of Attila, one has to admit that his is a very cunning detective. He is too deep for words.’ It was well that Attila had no powers of speech. Otherwise he would have burst into a lamentation which would have shattered the pedestal under his feet.” (101)

Narayan, R K. Malgudi Days. Edison, NJ: Vista India, 2005. Print

“An Astrologer’s Day”

“There was a pause as cars hooted on the road, jukta-drivers swore at their horses and the babble of the crowd agitated the semi-darkness of the park. The other sat down, sucking his cheroot, puffing out, sat there ruthlessly. The astrologer felt very uncomfortable.”

R.K. Narayan. Malgudi Days (New York: Penguin Books, 2006), 12.

The astrologer’s moment of realization is expressed through a zooming out and then in of perspective. The “pause” is what the astrologer alone feels, as his external environment carries on and “agitates” his feelings of discomfort. To the astrologer, the “other” sits “ruthlessly” because he alone feels “very uncomfortable.”