Interpretation of An Introduction
Writer: Kamala Suraiyya
Born: 31 March, 1934
Known as: Kamala Das
The poem comprises the following themes:
Politics: She knows about politics and politicians but not involved in politics. She knows everyone of power but she is alienated from the politics. She is politically margined this is one her introduction.
Language: She is monolingual in terms of feelings but multilingual in terms of the knowledge. She wants to write in English, which the society objects, if so society imposes constraints in terms of her language use. She is linguistically marginalized which is another aspects of her introduction.
Identity/Introduction: The speaker is marginalized even in terms of sexuality, clothing or other forms of behaviour. She chooses to have the affectionate sex partner but she is given the one who plays with her body. In the name of love she is almost raped. Her victimization shows that the patriarchal social structure does not tolerate the sexual desires on the part of the women. They go for sexuality not in her choice but to in the choice of their sex partners. Their only duty is to prostrate their body in front of this male. As a female one is required to satisfy the social desire of this sex partner. If so she is marginalized in terms of sexuality too.
Closely linked with the sexuality is her dress-code, she wants to put on the trousers, but the society gives her the Sari. In one way or the other society compels her to “fit in” the patriarchal stereotypes.
In all above given identities the speaker presents herself as the other. Whatever activities she performs are dictated by the society. She is not herself even when she is performing herself. She is out cast in terms of politics, language and sexuality. This role as an outcast projects her in the margin, but giving up her marginal position she wants to become ‘herself’ or ‘I’. This speaker is in tension between what she is and what her society wants her to be. It is a conflict between two Kamalas.