preview

Nectar In A Sieve

Decent Essays
The novel, Nectar in a Sieve, by Kamala Markandaya, takes readers on a journey of the struggling country of India. As a series of characters are introduced, we meet Rukmani, the narrator and protagonist. Rukmani is portrayed as a positive woman as she and her family endure the challenges of poverty. She embodies gender issues despite the unavoidable superiority of males. Nectar in a Sieve provokes readers to question power shifts and role of women in rural, isolated, or impoverished cultures.
All throughout, there have been many instances of hope, faith, and love in Rukmani’s life, but of these, hope is the most significant theme. As Rukmani and Nathan’s marriage went underway, they were both full of hope for the time to come: Nathan will ultimately
…show more content…
The private details, misgivings, failings, and joys that she shares openly show the readers symbols of hope and love. In particular, Nectar in a Sieve becomes growingly apparent that grain and seed are worthless without water. The cause of water on the harvests and crops is evident enough, but water seems to appear as a major symbol in periods of shortage and prosperity. Water is significant in Nathan’s death as well: it sprinkles on the day he’s ill, and by the time he passes away, there’s a rainstorm. Even the dependable light that usually burns atop the temple has been wet by the water, causing Rukmani to angrily repeat, "Fire cannot burn in water!" (Markandaya 250) Similarly, water also becomes an important symbol for the women. In the most apparent instance, Nathan and Rukmani’s first born child, Irrawaddy, was named "after one of the great rivers of Asia, as of all things water was most precious to us." (Markandaya 27) Like the women of Nectar in a Sieve, water gives life and takes it away. Women’s sexuality, like water, must be in moderation, or harmful repercussions could follow. Water is a beneficial in when not used excessively, but too much or too little can be fatal. Markandaya’s remarkable use of symbolism adds nothing but depth and meaning to her
Get Access