Get Instant Help From 5000+ Experts For
question

Writing: Get your essay and assignment written from scratch by PhD expert

Rewriting: Paraphrase or rewrite your friend's essay with similar meaning at reduced cost

Editing:Proofread your work by experts and improve grade at Lowest cost

And Improve Your Grades
myassignmenthelp.com
loader
Phone no. Missing!

Enter phone no. to receive critical updates and urgent messages !

Attach file

Error goes here

Files Missing!

Please upload all relevant files for quick & complete assistance.

Guaranteed Higher Grade!
Free Quote
wave

The portrayal of history in literature

Question:

Discuss about the Portrayal of History in Literature Transplanting.

Those who plead their cause in the absence of an opponent can invent to their heart's content, can pontificate without taking into account the opposite point of view and keep the best arguments for themselves, for aggressors are always quick to attack those who have no means of defence.

The above quoted words of Christine de Pizan from her famous work “Der Sendbrief vom Liebesgott / The Letter of the God of Love” clearly indicate the kind of interpretation which History has been subjected in this world. It is often seen that comes down to us from the perception which it had for the people who are in power. There are many authors in the world right now who seek to portray this gross misrepresentation of History in their works. Some of the famous management authors who belong to this particular genre are Michael Ondaatje, Gabriel García Márquez, Salman Rushdie and various others[1]. This essay intends to study the misrepresentation of History through the novel “In the Skin of the Lion” of Michael Ondaatje.

The essence of the work of Michael Ondaatje can be found in his own lines from the novel “The English Patient”, “We die containing a richness of lovers and tribes, tastes we have swallowed, bodies we have plunged into and swum up as if rivers of wisdom, characters we have climbed into as if trees, fears we have hidden in as if caves. I wish for all this to be marked on by body when I am dead”[2]. The literary works of Michael Ondaatje can be seen as the body on which he records these experiences. Michael Ondaatje is a Canada based Sri Lankan author, who was born in the year 1943[3]. His literary works have been much appreciated and he is the proud recipient of various prestigious awards like “Booker Prize”, “Governor General's Award”, “Prix Médicis étranger”, “Giller Prize” and various others[4]. The novel “In the Skin of the Lion” can be seen a historical novel which centers round the life of Patrick Lewis, the protagonist of the novel[5]. Patrick is the son of a Toronto farmer from whom he learns the art of “dynamiting stuck logs”[6]. In the later part of his life after the death of his father he turns to “dynamiting stuck logs”. It is to be noted that it through his life and his journey through the novel that the various facets of the Canadian History are revealed. According to Michael Ondaatje in his novel “The Cat's Table”, “What is interesting and important happens mostly in secret, in places where there is no power”. Therefore, in this particular novel he tries to portray the History which is not found in any History books and which happens in secret like the building of the city of Toronto by the immigrants which is not found in any official documents. In the words of the author, "It is a novel about the wearing and the removal of masks; the shedding of skin, the transformations and translations of identity".

The essence of Michael Ondaatje's work

The essence of this novel can be found in the lines of the novel “The joyful will stoop with sorrow, and when you have gone to the earth I will let my hair grow long for your sake, I will wander through the wilderness in the skin of a lion”[8]. The novel is often consider to represent the building of the city of Toronto by immigrants like the protagonist of the novel Patrick Lewis, the record of which is not found in official documents[9]. According to Michael Ondaatje in his novel “The English management Patient”, “A novel is a mirror walking down a road”. Therefore, this particular novel of Ondaatje is considered to be a mirror of the city of Toronto. The emotional alienation of the central character of the novel Patrick finds adequate representation in lines like “The trouble with all of us is we are where we shouldn't be”. Therefore, it can be said that the journey of the protagonist represents the wanderings of all the immigrants who worked hard to build the city of Toronto and yet received no credit for their effort[10]. Thus, the novel can be said to portray the misrepresentation of History which forms a common element of the works of Gabriel García Márquez, Salman Rushdie and others.

The novel also provides an adequate representation of the lives of the various diverse entities of the society like the nun who later becomes Alice and the woman Clara[11]. It is to be noted that in the novel Ondaatje portrays the incident where the nuns jumped off the bridge. In this particular novel of Ondaatje the nun is involved in the bridge accident where she gets drowned in the water but is saved through the intervention of Nicholas Temelcoff. It is to be noted that later she and Temelcoff try to escape from the mundane drudgery of their lives by embarking on an affair. This particular section of the novel, often called by the name of “The Bridge” revolves around the construction of the “Bloor Street Viaduct” by immigrants like Temelcoff[12]. It is to be noted that this particular bridge forms the connecting link between the central as well as the eastern part of the city of Toronto. This particular incident narrated by the author in the novel once again represents the misrepresentation of the Canadian History where the efforts of the immigrants have not got adequate representation[13].

The novel represents another historical event in the second part. It is to be noted that the novel states that in 1930 Lewis works as a dynamiter on Lake Ontario for the construction of a tunnel[14]. The novel also states that most of the workers working for the construction of this particular tunnel are the immigrants who have migrated to Canada from various diverse parts of the world. The immigrants often after the completion of their days work would assemble and enjoy their leisure time. It is to be noted that this place was also the ground where the people from various nationalities would gather together and discuss the problems which they are facing[15]. It is noted that there are historical evidences about these clandestine meetings of the immigrants however there are no records concerning the building of this particular bridge by the immigrants.

The novel In the Skin of the Lion

Therefore, from the above discussion the fact of the misrepresentation of History becomes clear. This particular novel of Michael Ondaatje represents the misrepresentation of the Canadian History by the government of Canada. It is to be noted that the city of Ontario was made by the immigrants from various different countries, who migrated to the nation of Canada in the twentieth century. The author uses various post-modernistic techniques to portray the fact of the misrepresentation of History. This particular novel therefore is considered to be a post-colonial novel on account of its representation of the times when the various immigrants from diverse nations were subjected to subjugation in the nation of Canada.

References

Barbour, Douglas. Michael Ondaatje. Vol. 835. Twayne Pub, 1993.

Delmas, Catherine. "Transplanting seeds in diasporic literature: Michael Ondaatje's' the cat's table'and Amitav Ghosh's' sea of management and river of smoke'." Commonwealth Essays and Studies 38, no. 2 (2016): 19.

Minghella, Anthony, Anthony Minghella, Michael Ondaatje, John Seale, Saul Zaentz, and Gabriel Yared. "ENGLISH PATIENT" (2012).

Ondaatje, Michael, and Catherine Bush. "An Interview by Catherine Bush." Conjunctions 15 (1990): 87-98.

Ondaatje, Michael. In the Skin of a Lion. Picador, 2017.

Pane, Samuel. "Unofficial Collections: Organic/Artifactual Documents and the (Re) Inscription of the Civic Archive in Michael Ondaatje’s In the Skin of a Lion." ARIEL: A Review of International English Literature 42, no. 3-4 (2012).

Ramachandran, Rashmi. "Michael Ondaatje by Lee Spinks." Studies in the Novel 45, no. 1 (2013): 140-142.

Shou-Nan, Hsu. "Creating a solid foundation for peace: Writing of the lost life in Michael Ondaatje’s Handwriting." The Journal of Commonwealth Literature 47, no. 3 (2012): 393-410.

Spinks, Lee. Michael Ondaatje. Oxford University Press, 2013.

[1] Spinks, Lee. Michael Ondaatje. Oxford University Press, 2013.

[2] Minghella, Anthony, Anthony Minghella, Michael Ondaatje, John Seale, Saul Zaentz, and Gabriel Yared. "ENGLISH PATIENT" (2012).

[3] Spinks, Lee. Michael Ondaatje. Oxford University Press, 2013.

[4] Spinks, Lee. Michael Ondaatje. Oxford University Press, 2013.

[5] Ramachandran, Rashmi. "Michael Ondaatje by Lee Spinks." Studies in the Novel 45, no. 1 (2013): 140-142.

[6] Ondaatje, Michael. In the Skin of a Lion. Picador, 2017.

[7] Ondaatje, Michael. In the Skin of a Lion. Picador, 2017.

[8] Ondaatje, Michael. In the Skin of a Lion. Picador, 2017.

[9] Pane, Samuel. "Unofficial Collections: Organic/Artifactual Documents and the (Re) Inscription of the Civic Archive in Michael management Ondaatje’s In the Skin of a Lion." ARIEL: A Review of International English Literature 42, no. 3-4 (2012).

[10] Shou-Nan, Hsu. "Creating a solid foundation for peace: Writing of the lost life in Michael Ondaatje’s Handwriting." The Journal of Commonwealth Literature 47, no. 3 (2012): 393-410.

[11] Delmas, Catherine. "Transplanting seeds in diasporic literature: Michael Ondaatje's' the cat's table'and Amitav Ghosh's' sea of poppies and river of smoke'." Commonwealth Essays and Studies 38, no. 2 (2016): 19.

[12] Barbour, Douglas. Michael Ondaatje. Vol. 835. Twayne Pub, 1993.

[13] Ondaatje, Michael, and Catherine Bush. "An Interview by Catherine Bush." Conjunctions 15 (1990): 87-98.

[14] Shou-Nan, Hsu. "Creating a solid foundation for peace: Writing of the lost life in Michael Ondaatje’s Handwriting." The Journal of Commonwealth Literature 47, no. 3 (2012): 393-410.

[15] Shou-Nan, Hsu. "Creating a solid foundation for peace: Writing of the lost life in Michael Ondaatje’s Handwriting." The Journal of Commonwealth Literature 47, no. 3 (2012): 393-410.

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:

My Assignment Help. (2019). Misrepresentation Of History In Literature: An Essay On Distortions.. Retrieved from https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/portrayal-of-history-in-literature-transplanting.

"Misrepresentation Of History In Literature: An Essay On Distortions.." My Assignment Help, 2019, https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/portrayal-of-history-in-literature-transplanting.

My Assignment Help (2019) Misrepresentation Of History In Literature: An Essay On Distortions. [Online]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/portrayal-of-history-in-literature-transplanting
[Accessed 05 March 2024].

My Assignment Help. 'Misrepresentation Of History In Literature: An Essay On Distortions.' (My Assignment Help, 2019) <https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/portrayal-of-history-in-literature-transplanting> accessed 05 March 2024.

My Assignment Help. Misrepresentation Of History In Literature: An Essay On Distortions. [Internet]. My Assignment Help. 2019 [cited 05 March 2024]. Available from: https://myassignmenthelp.com/free-samples/portrayal-of-history-in-literature-transplanting.

Get instant help from 5000+ experts for
question

Writing: Get your essay and assignment written from scratch by PhD expert

Rewriting: Paraphrase or rewrite your friend's essay with similar meaning at reduced cost

Editing: Proofread your work by experts and improve grade at Lowest cost

loader
250 words
Phone no. Missing!

Enter phone no. to receive critical updates and urgent messages !

Attach file

Error goes here

Files Missing!

Please upload all relevant files for quick & complete assistance.

Other Similar Samples

support
Whatsapp
callback
sales
sales chat
Whatsapp
callback
sales chat
close