God of Small Things Ammu
- Pages: 4
- Word count: 882
- Category: Novel
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1.Physical description of the character. How relevant is this for the novel?
First impression: “…how hugely pregnant Ammu was…”
* “Ammu had an elaborate Calcutta wedding. Later, looking back on the day, Ammu realized that the slightest feverish glitter in her bridegroom’s eyes had not been love, or even excitement at the prospect of carnal bliss, but approximately eight large pegs of whiskey. Straight. Neat.” * Beautiful and sardonic woman
* Judged by society
* “Beautiful, young and cheeky”
* AMMU AND BABA MOVE TO ASSAM: “ She wore backless blouses with her saris and carried a silver lamé purse on a chain. She smoked long cigarretes in a silver cigarrette holder and learn to make perfect smoke rings” * AMMU DIVORCEHOOD AND MOTHERHOOD, she is back in Ayemenem: “Even her walk changed from a safe mother-walk to another wilder sort of walk. She wore flowers in her hair and carried magic secrets in her eyes. She spoke to no one.”
Her own impression about herself “ When she looked at herself in her wedding photographs, Ammu felt the woman that looked back at her was someone else. A foolish jewelled bride. Her silk sunset-coloured sari shot with gold. Rings on every finger…” “Looking at herself like this, Ammu’s soft mouth would twist into a small, bitter smile at the memory, not of the wedding but to the fact that she had permmited herself to be so painstakingly decorated before being led to the gallows”
Artist Rebecca Posner’s imagining of Ammu, the doomed mother of twins Rahel and Estha, and lover of untouchable Velutha, in the novel. Rebecca Posner
2. The “individual story” of each character (be brief)
Ammu Timeline (until what we have been reading so far)
* Ammu has kind of a rough upbringing.
* Pappachi runs Ammu and Mammachi out of the house from time to time.
* One night, he tears up her rubber boots, her most prized possession. * Ammu’s parents don’t think it’s necessary to send a woman to college, so she spends her young adulthood living at home and waiting for marriage proposals. * One summer, Ammu’s parents allow her to move to Calcutta. She meets Baba, who proposes to her five days after they meet. She accepts. * Ammu gives birth to Estha and Rahel in 1962.
* When the twins are 2 years old, Baba loses his job. He tells Ammu he can keep his job if she agrees to sleep with his boss. He punches her when she says no. After this happens a few times, she takes the kids and moves back to Ayemenem. * Ammu gets mad at the twins for misbehaving when Sophie Mol comes to visit. She thinks they make a bad first impression. * Ammu sees Rahel run off to talk to Velutha.
When Margaret Kochamma makes an ignorant comment about the local culture, Ammu gets angry and storms off. http://www.shmoop.com/god-of-small-things/ammu-timeline.html
“Ammu didn’t pretend to be in love with him”
“..anything would be better than returning to Ayemenem”
3.The character as a vehicle of themes, EXPLAIN”
* Forbidden Love (love laws)
* Reality vs. Dreams /hopes
* Neglect abuse
* Responsibility vs Duty
1. Forbidden Love
One interpretation of Roy’s theme of forbidden love is that love is such a powerful and uncontrollable force that it cannot be contained by any conventional social code. Another is that conventional society somehow seeks to destroy real love, which is why love in the novel is consistently connected to loss, death, and sadness. Also, because all romantic love in the novel relates closely to politics and history, it is possible that Roy is stressing the interconnectedness of personal desire to larger themes of history and social circumstances. Love would therefore be an emotion that can be explained only in terms of two peoples’ cultural backgrounds and political identities.
This book is basically about love. Although the book is tragic, it is a most beautiful love story. The beauty of Ammu and Velutha’s love for each other is that it is forbidden. It is a wild and dangerous love. This is what gives it its special flavor and intensity. Arundhati Roy gives the reader a deeper understanding of all of the different dimensions of love. Ammu died at the age of thirty-one while out of town for a job interview. The church refused to bury her, so she was cremated. Rahel watched with Chacko while her body was pushed into the oven, but neither of them cried.
In this novel, Ammu is presented as the original transgressor. Her transgression lies in her defiance of society’s rule, in not just one aspect, but in a variety of aspects. As a daughter, she defied her family’s expectations by marrying a man of a different religion. As a wife, she was expected to defer to her husband’s wishes
Ammu doesn’t think too much of social rank. In fact, she’s kind of proud that Velutha was spotted at the communist march, figuring that they both find society’s norms oppressive and wrong. This doesn’t mean Ammu doesn’t care about appearances altogether; she wants her kids to behave well so that everyone can see that a woman on her own can be both independent and a good mother