Battles of Our Own
by Jagadish Mohanty, translated by Himansu S. Mohapatra and Paul St-Pierre
Recommendations from our site
“The story features a working-class hero who becomes a martyr for justice but it’s really an ensemble cast of characters from different parts of the country. It’s a deeply political novel about the mining underworld, unionization, caste, class, capitalism, communism, Marxism, poverty, migration. It also addresses existential themes of alienation and identity, man versus nature. Mohanty’s writing style isn’t lyrical but he does take us into the vulnerable and tormented psyches of the main characters. Where Mohanty excels is in immersing us deep into the world of a colliery, showing what it’s like to be a part of it from every level of its hierarchy, how power begets violence. It’s a Victorian-style ‘loose, baggy monster’ of a novel, but it is also a one-of-a-kind historic document of Gujarati culture and society during colonial times.” Read more...
The Best South Asian Novels in Translation
Jenny Bhatt, Translator