Ruth Prawer Jhabvala | Francine du Plessix Gray

This literature criticism consists of approximately 4 pages of analysis & critique of Ruth Prawer Jhabvala.
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SOURCE: "The Cult of the Cousin," in The New York Times Book Review, March 28, 1993, pp. 13-14.

Gray is a Polish-born American journalist, novelist, and critic. In the following negative review of Poet and Dancer, she laments the absence of the "talismanic force of the subcontinent" that energized her previous novels.

With the exception of E. M. Forster, no 20th-century writer has more eloquently described Westerners' attempts to grasp the ambiguities of Indian culture than Ruth Prawer Jhabvala. In novels like Travelers and Heat and Dust, Ms. Jhabvala's portrayals of the subcontinent's Zeitgeist—its puzzling composite of emotional prodigality and glaring inequalities, mysticism and materialistic greed—were deft and firm. Critics began to note that her India had become as rich a metaphor for universal experience as Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County or the czarist Russia of Chekhov's fiction.

Ms. Jhabvala's insights into India have been based...

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This section contains 1,121 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Francine du Plessix Gray
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Francine du Plessix Gray from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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