Freedom Fables

Satire and Politics in Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain's Writings

Edited and Translated by Kalyani Dutta

Freedom Fables

Edited and Translated by Kalyani Dutta

Distributed for Zubaan Books

220 pages | 8 x 5 | © 2018
Cloth $20.00 ISBN: 9789385932489 Will Publish April 2018 World sales rights except India
From the writer of the delightful utopian fantasy Sultana’s Dream come these witty tales describing the twists and turns of India’s two-hundred-year relationship with the Imperial British. Available to contemporary English readers for the first time, Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain’s Freedom Fables is temporally vast but compact in form and size. The first tale, “Gyanphal—The Fruit of Knowledge”, begins in the Garden of Eden. This paradise swiftly devolves into an idealized Kanakdesha where a trading company beguiles the prosperous country and proceeds to ruin it. The second story, “Muktiphal—The Fruit of Freedom”, zeroes in on the rise and growth of India’s Congress Party.
 
Hossain’s political satires are published here together in a single translated edition, several translated into English for the first time. Intertwined in Hossain’s writings are enduring ideals: education and emancipation for women, dignity and freedom for Indians from colonial rule, and the many themes she employs in her works under these two overarching passions. Throughout these tales, the fantastic floats easily over mere facts. Adam and Eve, the Almighty himself, djinns, demons, and magicians—all of these classic characters play decisive, intriguing roles. Apart from these two bitingly witty satires , Freedom Fables includes an additional seven essays and poems that were written over a period of seventeen years.
 
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