This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Other Side Of Silence, By Urvashi Butalia

1662 words - 7 pages

Urvashi Butalia in her book, The Other Side of Silence, attempts to analyze the partition in Indian society, through an oral history of Indian experiences. The collection of traumatic events from those people who lived through the partition gives insight on how history has enveloped these silences decades later. Furthermore, the movie 1947 Earth reveals the bitterness of partition and its effect of violence on certain characters. The most intriguing character which elucidates the silence of the partition is the child, Lenny. Lenny in particular the narrator of the story, serves as a medium to the intangibility created by the partition. The intangibility being love and violence, how can ...view middle of the document...

And it has cost me fifty years of remorse, of sleepless nights, I cannot forget the faces” (Butalia, p66). The vivid details left as silence because the silence represents the inability to cope, understand or believe in the unjust horrors committed during the partition. Furthermore, this unjust silence is expressed through the children of Earth.
Lenny grows up with groups she holds dear to her innocence, a groups consisting of a Sikh, Hindu, and Muslim. Most of the scenes show the livelihood of the group, they are shown laughing and talking in a park. This is the essence of the park. Lenny asks her mother if she will be able to get to the park if the British break India apart. The park shares great significance to Lenny, it is her safe haven and place of recreation, the park is never silent. Moreover, the park serves as a medium of interaction and unity between the Sikhs, Hindus, and Muslims. In one particular scene, the park is loud as usual, but we are introduced to a silent Lenny as partition discussions arise. The others argue over which group will self-rule India, while all this is taking place Lenny is speechless. Her observant behavior is only broken when she wants to play, this scene in particular shows the child’s inability to understand the potential danger within her community, it is absent from her mind. At this point, Lenny has no understanding of communal violence, she only has experience the medium Lahore Park serves, a community united.
In contrast with Lenny’s silence, Butalia states, “Memories of partition, the horror and brutality…nothing as cruel and bloody happened in my own family so far as I knew, but I began to realize that partition was not a closed chapter of history” (Butalia, p55). Butalia was not exposed to the silence of the partition because she possessed the innocence of a ‘child’. Lenny doesn’t understand the upheaval transcending into the partition. This silence is a stain of her innocence, and is deeper explored when Lenny attends the wedding of her friend. A young girl whose family were servants to Lenny’s family. Furthermore, the young girl is converting to Christianity by marrying a Christan. This is done as a preemptive measure to avoid being a victim of the partition. Little do we know the husband to be is an elderly man. Lenny and her friend are at a loss of words. They are unable to comprehend the marriage, and the groom tries to play with her doll. Moreover, the doll serves an important symbol to silence. Lenny is usually seen with a doll when she’s not in the company of her friends. The relationship with the doll exemplifies the comfort within silence. Dolls cannot speak, hate, and they do not blame each other over land being divided, and therefore, offer the comfort of confinement. Lenny escapes the problematic discussions of partition with her doll.
In midst of the partition, much violence took place in Kaflias. More in-depth, Butalia explains “Everywhere along the route, whether people were on...

Other Essays Like The Other Side Of Silence, By Urvashi Butalia

The Dark Side of Poe Essay

1617 words - 7 pages people to let go of the things that bothered them the most. Before this time people normally kept things bottled up in fear of being frowned upon by the next person. Poe on the other hand wrote about something that intrigued him, the dark side of humanity. He knew everyone did not lead the perfect lives and did not feel that people should pretend to either. As stated by Hullah Shureteh, “… Romanticism is a notoriously and extremely difficult

All of the Other Ways of Knowing Are Controlled by Language

1847 words - 8 pages I believe that the statement "All of the other Ways of Knowing are controlled by language" is only valid to some extent. First, we must examine the word "control" itself. The definition of "control" is to exercise restraint or direction over; dominate; command. This definition suggests one of two things. Firstly, it suggests that language has a dominating role in its relationship with the other Ways of Knowing: Reason, Emotion, and Perception

Movie Analysis of the Blind Side

1210 words - 5 pages jail, twelve siblings, no stable living environment and little formal education. In contrast, the Tuohy’s lifestyle was considerably different, owning nearly one-hundred franchises of taco bell, and living on the upscale side of town. The film focuses on the adoption of Michael Oher by the Tuohy family after he was invited to stay the night when they realized he had no other place to go. Ohers' stay extended each day as the family began to treat him

The Dark Side Of Robert Frost

1680 words - 7 pages dozens of published poems. These works of art reveal his innermost thoughts and emotions, often in a depressing manor. The biography, The Frost Family's Adventure In Poetry, written by Frost's granddaughter Lesley Lee Francis speaks of his dark side. In Frost's earlier poems he relates them to war. "The Lost Faith", never entirely published, which points out a rather grim picture. It is about dreams that are deathless and things fading from sight

The Better Side of April Raintree

999 words - 4 pages The Better Side Of April Raintree Helen Keller once said, “when one door of happiness closes another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.“ The key to not only surviving, but also thriving in extreme circumstances is not to give up, but to keep ongoing because in the end it`ll all be worth it. There are many events that occur during the novel (Beatrice Cullen April

Time Not on the Side of the Jobless

828 words - 4 pages In an article that appeared in The Wall Street Journal titled “Time Not on Side of the Jobless,” Ben Casselman explains how there have been some improvements in the job market, but it isn’t an advantage for everyone. According to Casselman, “employers have stepped up hiring, layoffs have slowed, and the unemployment rate has begun to fall more quickly” (Casselman 1). Opportunities for the unemployed, however, have been sparse. People who are

The Existence Of Existence Among Other Things

490 words - 2 pages we experience it. So how could he know the rest of the world around him existed? To say that experiencing existence comes down to just looking around at the world, then wouldn't it be valid to say that we only exist in our minds? The world is made up of interpretations by the electrical and chemical impulses that make up the brain. So, couldn't it be possible to argue that no one truly knows that the world exists?If the world is made up by these

The Light and Dark Side of DNA Technology

594 words - 3 pages The Light and Dark Side of DNA Technology As with most modern advances, DNA technology has opened the door to a vast new world of discovery. On the positive side, DNA aids us in the fight against disease, such as cancer, and many genetic disorders, such as muscular dystrophy. Yet many in society are concerned with the ethical issue of using DNA in matters such as cloning, genetic tampering, and the irratication of less than perfect fetuses

Debate: Media shouldn't carry reports of suicides by charcoal burning - opposition side

374 words - 2 pages The reports alert the society and care-takers to concern and care for people around them, among those who might have the tendency to commit suicide. By bringing awareness, those who are suicidal may receive help and counseling, which would hopefully change their mind about committing suicide. By reporting the news of suicides by charcoal burning, the people who are under stress will know that they're not alone and that it's a problem that can be

With Close Reference to the Play ‘ View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller , Show How the Relationship Between Eddie and Catherine and Other Members of the Household Change

3183 words - 13 pages English Literature Coursework With Close Reference to The Play ‘A View From The Bridge ‘ By Arthur Miller , Show How The Relationship Between Eddie And Catherine And Other Members Of The Household Change. ‘A View from the Bridge ‘is a play that uses controversial topics such as incest and immigration to illustrate the depth of insanity that uncontrolled feelings can take a man to. The relationship between Eddie a longshore man

An essay based on class handouts that states the opinion that Isreal and Palestine will never be able to live side-by-side in peace

392 words - 2 pages Wailing Wall Incident." The wall made up the western side of a temple that was highly revered by the Jews. When the Jews went to pray there, the Muslims became angry. There were arguments for the wall. Then there was a civil war. While I understand that the wall was very important to the people around it, when broken down, these people had a war over a pile of bricks. These are not the actions of a people willing to come to a peaceful

Related Papers

The Other Side Of The River: Twin Cities, Twin Races By Alex Kotlowitz

1928 words - 8 pages page, and makes the dénouement last until the final page, and still has a great book. Alex Kotlowitz accomplished this in The Other Side of the River by bringing in other elements and stories involving poverty, race, safety, and more; literally using the death of Eric McGinnis as an excuse to tell a story yearning to be untold, one of the lives, deaths, and mentalities, of thousands of people, white and black alike.On the very first page

The Law Of Silence Essay

2933 words - 12 pages can incite us to revelations which can jeopardize the tranquility or harm those near to us because of the incomprehension of our words, by our affections on one hand, and on the other by Brothers to whom we are linked by a solemn vow; this is why the law of external silence is absolute, the Mason must know how to be quiet, he must respect his vow without failure. He must be silent when not in the temple or in the presence of equals. Heed well

"The Harlot By The Side Of The Road"

1086 words - 5 pages "The Harlot by the Side of the Road" was an interesting look at stories from the Bible that most people do not even know exist. In Sunday school and church you never hear the stories of rape, incest and violence that Jonathan Kirsch explains in this book. The teachers and pastors screen what knowledge of the Bible they teach you, leaving out the stories of the ever so controversial topic of sex. Through out the stories I had read of the

Sound Of Silence: Elixir For The Fools!

1171 words - 5 pages Tank 1 Vraj Tank Prof. Teng English 103, 12AM June 1, 2016 The Sound of Silence: Elixir for the Fools! Sound and Silence are contradictory words which cannot exist together. Likewise, the East and the West cannot meet. We cannot see the Sun and the Moon at the same time and the same place. But the lyrical song, “The Sound of Silence” written by American artist and singer