Challenging the Stereotype of Political Neutrality: The Representation of Parsi Community in Selected Fictional Works
The IUP Journal of English Studies
Maya Vinai and M G Prasuna
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This paper seeks to probe into the role of the marginalized “other” in trauma narratives. An attempt has been made to understand as to how the so-called political neutrality associated with the minority Parsi community has been represented in the fiction of two prominent Indian English writers, namely, Rohinton Mistry and Meher Pestonji. Several instances have been put forth in the paper which provide an alternative paradigm to the politics of representation enforced by the mainstream to reveal as to how this neutrality has been employed by the “other” gainfully to negotiate between the two warring hegemonic groups and bring peace and harmony in a terror-striven atmosphere.
South Asia is marked by a great variety and diversity of ethnic groups, languages,
and cultures. This plural culture has been under threat from the homogenizing
pressures of the nation-state. And in any of the strife for identity assertion, there
are always a few groups or the marginalized “other” which remain ostentatiously neutral.
But often the role of the “other” is eliminated or downsized in the striving for power
politics during the aftermath, especially whilst computing the loss occurred.
This paper seeks to probe into the role and representation of the “other,” namely, the
minority Parsi community, in the important political events of the nation like the Babri
Masjid issue and the consequent Hindu-Muslim riots in Mumbai. The argument we would
like to put forth here is, how despite the Parsi political “neutrality” projected in many of
the trauma narratives of the nation, this neutrality has often become a conduit for negotiating
with the hegemonic groups and rescuing the victims of terror.
English Studies Journal, Challenging, Stereotype, Political Neutrality, Representation, Parsi Community, 785 CE, Indian Muse, Family Matters, 600 BCE, Selected Fictional Works