The God Of Small Tings English Language Essay

Published: Last Edited:

This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers.

The God of Small Tings is the most prominent outburst of female emotions breaking up the conventional linguistic system of syntactic structures at several places in the novel. Roy has made a revolutionary attempt at crossing the limits of some male made grammaticalities of English language. On can find her linguistic inventiveness at almost all levels of syntactic, semantic and stylistic elements and structures. Her innovations almost at all pages of the novel make the female attitudes and behaviours work successfully in a magical and miraculous way.

Roy I her novel The God of Small Tings has changed the traditional concept of the structure of the 'sentence'. She proved that grammatical constraints are not necessary for the writer to express her ideas and emotions in her new language very successfully. 'Subjects' and 'predicates' of a sentence are now not essentially needed for the structure of sentence. A single phrase or even a single word can now become a full sentence in her new system of syntactic structures. Roy has maintained her incipient feminine potentiality of writing by subverting and undermining the fixed rules , significations, logic and the closure of the male centered language by opening out into a joyous free play of meanings and emotions, for this purpose she has broken the fixed word order of the syntax. Without such deliberate distortions and breaking up the logical syntactic structures, free play of meaning and ideas would have remained impossible. Her performative use of English language is very successful towards the end of the novel to bring about the erotic functioning of the female sexual experiences. The force of fluidity and rapidity is always apparent in the new structure of the language , the feeling of the experience and the exposure of behavior.

Arundhati Roy with her efforts of linguistic and psychological behavior , has created a monumental architecture of marriage and divorce with the play of love , hatred and politics. These ungrammatical new sentences are constructed with fractured sentences. She has made English language to work for the expression of paradoxical and ambiguous truth of a divorced life and language. She has really proved "the energy efficiency of vernacular architecture". her new syntactic system of patterning and coining words and phrases adds a new horizon to the linguistic principles of diversity, generativity and multiple possibilities. These ungrammatical new sentences are structured with new use of connective elements generating paradoxes and ambiguities of meanings through the idiomatic constructions of words and phrases. Most of the description and the discourses of experiences in the novel are pointedly structured where long traditional sentences are concluded with pointed sentences have been expressed through fractured and meaningless sentences and utterances. She has broken the borders and the boundaries of grammatical rules of sentences. It is not necessary for her to give a logical grammatic shape to the meanings and ideas contained in the writer's mind. It has not the language that makes meaning clear. But it is the meaning or the background that plays a vital role to reveal the structure of the sentence. In the fist chapter of the novel the writer makes description of Rahel and Estha through such grammatical and ungrammatical constructions of phrases , clauses and sentences " Edges , Boarders, Boundaries, Brinks and limits have appeared like a team on trolls on their separate horizons. Short creatures with long shadows, patrolling the Blurry End. Gentle half - moons have gathered under their eyes and they are as old as Ammu was when she died. Thirty - one.

Not old.

Not young.

But a viable die - able age." (Roy, p.2)

Here Roy has to express a long shadow of meanings containing in 'Blurry End' and 'half - moons'. So she has used the short sentences without subject and predicate. She has made a mixture of the linguistic and the non - linguistic constructions having their separate horizons in English language.

Another example from the novel for traditionally ungrammatical but pointed syntactic constructions of utterances may cited " what's the worst thing that can happen ? I could lose everything. May job. My family. My livelihood. Everything." (Roy, p.334)

An example which from the novel for long traditional and grammatical sentence followed by a chain of ungrammatical short sentences " As he rose from the dark river and walked up the stone steps , she saw that the world they stood in was his. That he belonged to it. That it belonged to him. The water. The mud. The trees. The fish. The stars." (Roy, p.333)

Roy has deliberately used such a new language where a clause and a phrase have been made an independent sentence. this way of using English language is the perfomative use of the language which is found inherent in women if they have undone the patriarchal pressure. The peculiar pattern of using participles and prepositions for the purpose of connectivity beyond the writer's successful attempts at her linguistic style and indicates towards the linguistic innovation in the language of the novel. A reader clearly look into the description where both Ammu and Velutha were lonely enjoying their nothingness and futurelessness. " They laughed at ant - bites on each other's bottoms. At clumsy caterpillars sliding off the ends of leaves, at overturned beetles that couldn't right themselves. At the pair of the small fish that always sought Velutha out in the river and bit him. At a particularly devout praying mantis. At the minute spider who lived in a crack in the wall of the black verandha of the History House and camouflaged himself by covering his body with bits of rubbish - a silver of wasp wing. Part of a cobweb. Dust. Leaf rot." ( Roy, p.338). The preposition 'at' used in the first sentence has further been reused several times to continue the connectivity beyond the sentences. It is also interesting to note another example from the text of the novel where 'like' has been used as a connecting element beyond the sentences. Such linguistic touch of Roy makes the reader feel the trail of semantic goose bumps on their mind " Like flat chalk o a blackboard. Like breeze in a paddy field. Like jet - streaks in blue sky." ( Roy, p.339).

The negative temporal phrase. 'not until' is used repeatedly to show the connectivity beyond the sentences. The whole utterance starting from 'at least not until' and ending at 'had touched' is in continuation of the sentences. Though the sentence structurally ends , it continues semantically. It is because the writer has to connect several other sentences starting with 'not until'. This new technique suits the writer's purpose of conveying connectivity. " But this time he held his peace. He said nothing. At least not until the terror took hold of him. Not until he saw, night after night, a little boat being rowed across the river. Not until he was it return at dawn. Not until he saw what his untouchable son had touched. More than touched. Entered. Loved." ( Roy, pp.77-78)

Roy has dispelled many semantic constraints from English language. The least use of conjunctions for maintaining the trailing of the semantic and sensuous goose bumps through the set of sentences. She has constructed a long sentence without conjunctions disobeying the traditional way of syntactic structures "His yellow teeth were magnets. They saw, they smiled, they sang , they smelled, they moved. They mesmerized." (Roy, p.102).

The novelist has made such a stylistic innovations where meaningless sentences have been loaded with multiple meanings lying beyond traditional significations. She used some regional phrases in the novel though they are meaningless, they have been used as escape valves for human mind in trauma. For example 'stopitted' in place of 'stopped it' where verbal paradigm 'stop' has been firstly treated as noun then compounded with the pronoun 'it'. It has been further inflected as the past tense form to procure 'stopitted' which has successfully been used I the language of the novel.

The coinages of some new phrases like 'The Torch Man', 'the Monkey Man' and 'Orangedrink Lemondrink Maní'. Many more examples of new constructions may be cited when a reader moves further. The phrase 'impossible - to - forget 'is used as an adjective in the following sentence. " His men had briefed him about the pots and pans. The grass mat. The impossible - to - forget toys." (Roy, p.314)

'God - knows - what' is grammatically peculiar phrase which is used as a noun in the following sentence. " In the back varandha of the History House , as the man they loved was smashed and broken. Mrs.Eapen and Mrs.Rajagopalan, Twin ambassadors of God - knows - what, learned two new lessons" (Roy, p.309). Another example in this regard 'the boat - on - legs': "The boat - on - legs approached the hut." (Roy, p.205).

The writer compacted certain words without using any hyphen as part of her mission for rapidity in language. "Cartoon platoon and deadly purposed" (Roy, p.304), "CocaColaFantaicecreamrosemilk" (Roy, p.301), "Thiswayandthat" (Roy, p.10) and "Yesyesyesyes" (Roy, p.86).

Roy deliberately deleted the predicates of the sentences at most of the places in the novel to achieve her intended desire through fractured construction of sentences. She consciously did away with the subjects of the sentences.

" It was a boat. A tiny wooden Vallom.

The boat that Estha sat on and Rahel found.

The boat that Ammu would use to cross the river.

To love by night the man her children love by day.

So old a boat that it had taken root. Almost.

A grey old boatplant with boatflowers and

boat fruit. And underneath, a boat - shaped patch

of withered grass. A scurring, hurrying boatworld.

Dark and dry and cool. Unroofed now.

And blind.

White termites on their way to work.

White lady birds on their way home.

White beetles burrowing away from the light.

White grasshoppers with whitewood violins.

Sad white music.

A white wasp. Dead

A brittle white snakeskin, preserved in darkness

crumbled in the sun" (Roy, p.202). Within the fixed boarders of grammatically constructed wet of sentences many fractured ungrammatical sentences have been used consciously.

At many places I the novel, the author has deliberately violated the normal sequence of syntactic patterning of subject + verb + object / adverbials. She had brought object before subject. "But Rahel Comrade Pillai knew well" (Roy, p.14) , "Though what exactly they meant by Group Activities they never said" (Roy, p.11), "This was the stuff their dreams were made of" (Roy, 326) and "Dizygotic doctors called them" (Roy, p.2).

The author has adopted a new style of linguistic presentation of the traumatic state of children's mind by reversing the order of letters in the words , phrases and sentences : " A yellow hoarding said (BE INDIAN, BUY INDIAN in red. 'NAIDNI YUB , NAIDNI EB'. Estha said" (Roy, p.58). When Estha and Rahel were offered a book entitled 'The Adventures of Susie Squirrel' by Miss Mitten , they read it aloud to her backwards in a reversed order as "ehT serutnevdA fo eisuS lerriuqS. enO gnirps gninrom Susie lerriuqS ekow pU" (Roy, p.60). According to the writer, these reverse readings are a kind of trauma management.

The language used in The God of Small Things, has been organized on the concept of 'Word Logos' where two opposite constituents of a grammatical sentence , the subject and the predicate are unable to express the female feelings and attitudes emphatically, if they do not transcend the limit of the rules. Apart from the grammatical or traditional sentences some ungrammatical sentences are also essential for the perfomative play of language in a transcendental state of anger, anxiety, fear, hate, love and ecstasy.