Lindsey Collen: The Rape of Sita (2158 words)


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The second novel by writer/activist Lindsey Collen, The Rape of Sita (1993), had a controversial reception in its native Mauritius, but went on to win the 1994 Commonwealth Prize for Best Novel in Africa and cement Collen’s international reputation. Drawing upon Hindu archetypes, African storytelling structure, and contemporary political debates making up the social fabric of the Mauritian nation, the novel positions its heroine Sita’s struggle for women’s rights as a fight against a history which has known slavery, indenture, and colonization. Although the novel’s depiction of the rape and the resulting trauma are harrowingly realistic, by employing a (feminist) male narrator and his audience to tell and direct the story,…

Citation: Rohatgi, Rashi. "The Rape of Sita". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 23 October 2015 [, accessed 24 October 2020.]

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