Contents: Preface. I. Introduction: 1. Interest in postcolonial studies. 2. Rejecting the centre-margin binary. 3. Nature of postcolonialism. 4. Postcolonial literatures and theoretical models. 5. Postcolonial studies: major issues. 6. Reading literary works differently. 7. Postcolonial texts as national allegories. 8. The universal and particularist dimension. 9. Shashi Deshpande’s novels. II. Postcolonial literatures: special features and critical models: 1. English studies and the empire. 2. National consciousness and postcolonial literatures. 3. Language and colonization. 4. Some critical models of postcolonialism. III. Postcolonialism and Shashi Deshpande’s novels: 1. The scope. 2. Edward said. 3. The dominative and the dominated mode and That Long Silence. 4. Man as a vicarious achiever: contrapuntal reading of The Dark Holds No Terrors. 5. Homi K. Bhabha. 6. Restrictive notion of cultural identity and productive instability of revolutionary change in Roots and Shadows. 6. Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak. 7. Silence and loneliness of the gendered subaltern in The Binding Vine. 8. Decolonising patriarchy and appropriating marginality: A Matter of Time and Small Remedies. IV. Feminism and Shashi Deshpande’s novels: 1. Some western feminists and Shashi Deshpande’s novels. 2. Some more feminist critics. 3. Indian feminism. V. Conclusion: 1. Introductory. 2. Shashi Deshpande and the middle-class woman. 3. Awakening through crisis. 4. Different forms of love. 5. Criticism of patriarchy. 6. Evolutionary and extensive picture of women. 7. Writing as a means of liberation. 8. Prominence of characters. 9. Shashi Deshpande and the so-called ‘National Experience’. 10. Deshpande’s protagonists and the search for identity. 11. Shashi Deshpande’s unique contribution. Bibliography.
"The status of woman all over the world, particularly in India, has been undergoing a rapid change in the recent decades. This phenomenon therefore has drawn the attention of literary artists, theorists and sociologists. The present book aims at analyzing Shashi Deshpande’s novels in the light of postcolonial and feminist theories. The author of the book argues, in a systematic and sustained manner, that Deshpande, in her fiction, deals essentially with the empowerment of women and that the postcolonial discourse offers a convenient theoretical framework to expound her viewpoint. He analyzes Deshpande’s novels in the light of postcolonial theories of literature, and concludes that the change in the position of woman in any society is a reliable index to social change in general. As such, the present study should be considered an important contribution not only to literature but also to women’s studies and sociology." (jacket)