Amitav Ghosh, The Shadow Lines

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Ghosh's second novel, The Shadow Lines (1988), focuses on a very particular personal history – the experience of a single family – as a microcosm for a broader national and international experience. The lives of the narrator's family have been irrevocably changed as a consequence of Bengal's Partition between India and Pakistan at the time of Independence and the subsequent experience of the East Pakistan Civil War of 1971, which led to the creation of Bangladesh. The “shadow lines” of the title are the borders that divide people and, as in all Ghosh's work, one of the main emphases is on the arbitrariness of cartographic demarcations. Towards the end, when members of the family are about to undertake a journey from …

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Citation: Thieme, John. "The Shadow Lines". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 January 2003 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=7704, accessed 07 February 2023.]

7704 The Shadow Lines 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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