Materialism And Criticism In The Foreigner By Arun Joshi

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Arun Joshi is one of the most prominent writers among the younger Indian English novelists. His place in the field of Indian English literature during the post-independence era is undisputed. Joshi came into the limelight with his very first novel The Foreigner which appeared in 1968. He instantly grabbed the attention of readers as well as critics by his new thematic concerns in the genre of novel. Unlike his predecessors he neither writes fiction for entertainment nor for any social or political propaganda. He experiments with the medium of novel writing, for studying the modern man’s predicament, particularly the motives responsible for his actions, and the effect of these actions on his psyche. Arun Joshi himself explains that, “My novels are essentially attempts towards a better understanding of the world and of myself” (qtd. in Dhawan, 18). Joshi probes deep into the psyche of the protagonist and picturises their mental toil and anxiety. Trapped between the Indian upbringing and Western influences, his protagonist suffers from evils of materialism which leads to up-rootedness, cynicism, loss of faith, and an identity crisis. Joshi’s protagonists are modern men of this world who are lost in a society of mixed ideals. His heroes, who rather turn anti-heroes due to this confused idealism, are running a fruitless expedition. They are struggling to sustain their faith in a world which stands in opposition to them. They are unable to hold on their identity in such a world

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