Bama (born ), also known as Bama Faustina Soosairaj, is a Tamil, Dalit feminist, committed teacher and novelist. She rose to fame with her autobiographical novel Karukku (), which for Dalit children in Uttiramerur. Bama’s Karukku has been translated to English and Kusumbukkaran and Sangati to French. Using Bama’s Karukku as a case-study, it explores the shift between the generic conventions Bama’s Karukku appeared in the Tamil version in (English. Karukku is the English translation of Bama’s seminal autobiography, which tells the story of a Dalit woman who left her convent to escape from the caste.

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Bama bornalso known as Bama Faustina Soosairajis a Tamil, Dalit feministcommitted teacher and novelist. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Karukku is an wonderful novel which I read with my whole heart…………Want to meet the writer Bama at least once in my life time…………. See all 8 reviews. Revolving around the main theme of caste oppression within the Catholic Church, it portrays the tension between the self and the community, and presents Bama’s life as a process of self-reflection and recovery from social and institutional betrayal.

Anukriti rated it liked it Sep 13, Milton Friedman Robert A.

Though I read Karukku in English, I was touched. Very good book, quality also very nice. So it was natural for me to by this autobiography by Bama, a Tamil Dalit woman while I was in Chennai for three weeks recently. On graduation, she served as a nun for seven years. She leaves home to join the convent in her twenties, after working for a few years as a teacher, hoping to contribute to a cause larger than caste, class and identity. Audible Download Audio Books.

‘Karukku’: An Autobiography By Bama Exploring Her Tamil, Dalit And Christian Identity

Karruku is a poignant subaltern novel that speaks of the childhood experiences of the author. That’s a lot of identities for a short volume like this but the focus here is on the Dalit and Christian aspects of it.


But most of the book feels like one big rant on social injustices with barely any mention of any extraordinary acts, either by her or the people around her. Retrieved 20 May Get to Know Us.

Bama (writer)

So Bama Faustina published her milestone work Karukku inn in a passionate and important mix of history, sociology, and the strength to remember. Her narrative is nuanced in exploring her intersecting identities as Dalit and woman in detail. It efficiently conveys the inner trauma of her being, her state of mind, feelings, and emotions.

Beyond all the oppression and humiliation there is HOPE. Would you like to tell us about a lower price?

Bama attributes education as the absolute reason for all her achievements in life and emphasises that only through education a change can happen. The living condition of the Parayas, as Bama describes it, is pitiful; and the way they are abused by everyone up on the caste ladder they happen to be on the lowest rung with even the police colluding is horrific. The book is written in a very specific dialect Southern Tamil which definitely looses at least some of the lyricality and the rhythms in translation and may appear redundant to some.

Her stories about the different ways she felt discrimination lit up the text.

Karukku by Bama

Probably both, to varying extents. I only wish it would have been done in a more readable way. Even leaving the enhlish proved a Herculean task as she was constantly stopped by the more senior nuns. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. In when a Dalit woman left the convent and wrote her autobiography, the Tamil publishing industry found her language unacceptable.

Periyar Rally In Trichy: As she describes her journey from childhood to adulthood, she narrates how caste and religion shaped her life and identity, and how it also worked as an oppressive force in the lives of Dalits.

The book was originally written by her in Tamil in and translated into the English version that I read by Lakshmi Holmstrom in kn Originally written in Tamil, this translation catapulted this book into international recognition and it has been widely read and celebrated, discussed and analyzed in variety of ways.


It is otherwise a partly nostalgic journey through her growing years, full of resentment on what life offered her or didn’t because of her caste and her struggles to overcome it, albeit a tad unsuccessfully. Focused on the observations and thoughts of the narrator, at times the story seemed to exist in a vacuum. Cody rated it liked it Oct 25, It was in that Bama left the convent that she had been a member of for seven years.

The narrative pace is very humdrum, and the sentences are repetitive and boring. Never does she attempt to tie all the loose ends of her self, her life or her view of the world together. This slim book ultimately proved a chore to get through. And I wonder if caste has seeped in much deeper than we realise. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Education also becomes one of the most prominent factors, for the story reveals the hypocrisy tha A short and a gripping read! Log into your account. Salty About Rajma Chawal: A Dalit Woman’s Memoirs. Visit our Help Pages. Offer valid only once per customer.

To tell the truth, this caste consciousness among Christians is quite common. Can’t stop thinking about the strength of her writing. Apart from her experiences, Bama’s lucid prose makes this book interesting. It is now, for the very first englizh that I must learn to be truly alone. Amazon Prime Music Stream millions of songs, ad-free.

Aravindh Sachidanandam rated it it was amazing Jan 23,