River Of Smoke By Amitav Ghosh Analysis

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ABSTRACT
Amitav Ghosh’s novel River of Smoke belongs to the category of the historical novel. With the help of various narrative schemes, Amitav Ghosh in this novel has re-written past that covers the phase of opium trafficking in Canton, in 1838. The story is about the conflict of Manchu Empire against the English Realm who made war on China for the sake of organised commerce. Ghosh has re-concocted past through utilising distinctive narratological mechanism while displaying the personal past with nation’s past. He uses consciousness, interior monologue, reliable and valid voices of chronicled personals, authentic documentation, decrees, Canton journals, Hukamnamas, declarations, interpreters, letters, painting and drawings and so forth to
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He imagines that history and accounts have fundamentally the same function. One needs to go through narrative to confront the surface of the story just as one has to travel through history to encounter pre-history. He accepts that he has always been enamoured by history.
Amitav Ghosh’s novel River of Smoke is associated to the genere of the historical novel. With the use of various narrative strategies, Amitav Ghosh in this novel has re-written history that covers the time of opium trade in Canton, in 1838. The story is about the conflict of Manchu Empire against the British Empire who made war on China for the sake of unhindered commerce. The British Government was favoured by vendors and dealers. They were exchanging in opium which was produced as restraining infrastructure of the East India Company. They discussed about free markets and exchange yet in reality the business sectors were not free at all as the Asian shippers couldn’t contend with British traders on equivalent terms. The merchants in Asia had a long custom. Indeed, even in the past they were highly ambitious, extremely cautious. They had the knowledge of local circumstances. Even when it was merely a matter of trade they were often able to out-do the British brokers and shippers. But the British sustained their control on business and exchange by utilizing their political and military power. It is through the omnipresent narrator or the character focalizer that we experience the historical time of opium war in River of Smoke. We examine through these characters and their recollections about the world they lived in the outside merchant’s quarter of Canton, the cliffs of Mauritius, the internal sanctum of walled Chinese garden or the life on a vessel, from all
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