Overview for Clarinda: A Historical Novel
Clarinda written in English is a novel set in the mid-18th century.The story is based on a historical figure, a real Clarinda, the widow of a Maratha Brahmin, who had been one of the King's servants in Tanjore, and after her husband's death became the concubine of an English officer of the name of Lyttleton.She asked Rev. Schwartz to baptize her when he visited Palayamkottai. He refused, however, because of her'irregular union'.Some years later, after her husband's death, she was accepted into the church.From these bare facts, Madhaviah creates a fictionalized early life of Clarinda as she grows up in the principality of Tanjore.The imagined story of this unusual woman, who gradually takes control of her life, gives Madhaviah the opportunity to work out some of his favourite themes: women's education, the questions of sati and widow re-marriage, and the encounter between Hinduism and Christianity.The cross-cultural, inter-religious relationship which is at the heart of the novel is unusual and profoundly interesting.
A. Madhaviah (Author)
A. Madhaviah (1872-1925) a pioneering novelist in both Tamil and English has written three novels in Tamil and three in English, besides several plays, poems, articles and several plays, poems, articles and short stories in both languages. He was also instrumental in setting up two journasl Tamizh Nesan and Panchamirtam.