That Long Silence by Shashi Deshpande

That Long Silence by Shashi Deshpande
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That Long Silence is a novel by Indian writer Shashi Deshpande. First published in 1988, it tells the story of a woman’s struggle to find her voice in a traditional Indian family. The protagonist, Jaya, is a young wife and mother who feels suffocated by the expectations of her role. She begins to speak out against the restrictions placed on her by her family and society, and this sets off a chain of events that will change her life forever. That Long Silence is a powerful story about a woman’s journey to self-discovery and empowerment.

A woman’s journey to self-discovery and empowerment

In the novel That Long Silence by Shashi Deshpande, the main character Jaya must grapple with many issues in her life before she can find true empowerment. She comes from a conservative family where women are not encouraged to pursue their interests or ambitions. Jaya’s mother expects her to get married and have children like her sisters, but Jaya wants more out of life. She eventually learns that she must stand up for herself and follow her path to be truly happy.

Jaya’s journey is not easy, but it is ultimately rewarding. She faces many challenges along the way, but each one makes her stronger and more confident. By the end of the novel, Jaya has transformed into a strong and independent woman who is ready to take on the world.

This novel is an inspiration to any woman who is facing struggles in her life. It shows that it is possible to overcome obstacles and achieve success if you are willing to fight for what you want. That Long Silence by Shashi Deshpande is a powerful story about a woman’s journey to self-discovery and empowerment.

The power of speaking out: How Jaya found her voice in That Long Silence

When Jaya first meets her future husband, she is immediately struck by his confidence and ease of conversation. It’s something she’s always lacked herself, feeling tongue-tied and awkward in social situations. This quality is one of the things that initially attracts her to him.

However, throughout their marriage, Jaya comes to realize that her husband’s confidence is often a mask for a deep insecurity. He is always seeking validation from others and is quick to anger when he feels like he’s not getting it. This causes tension in their relationship, as Jaya begins to feel like she can never truly be herself around her husband.

One day, after yet another argument, Jaya finally snaps and tells her husband that she’s had enough. She’s tired of walking on eggshells and pretending to be someone she’s not. It’s a liberating moment for her, and she finally feels like she can truly be herself.

This experience leads Jaya to start speaking out more in her own life. She starts to express her opinions more, and she slowly begins to build up the confidence to assert herself. It’s a process that takes time, but eventually, she becomes the strong and confident woman she always wanted to be.

Themes of tradition vs. modernity in That Long Silence

Indian writer Shashi Deshpande’s novel That Long Silence explores the theme of tradition versus modernity through the story of a woman’s journey of self-discovery.

The protagonist, Jaya, is a young wife and mother who feels suffocated by the restrictions of her traditional Indian role. She rebels against her husband’s authority and starts to explore her own identity and individuality. This leads her into conflict with her family and community, who are staunch defenders of traditional values.

Deshpande skilfully uses Jaya’s story to highlight the clash between the traditional and modern ways of life in India. On the one hand, Jaya is struggling to break free from the confines of her traditional role and explore her own identity. On the other hand, her family and community are clinging to their traditional values and resisting change.

This conflict is mirrored in the wider society, where the old guard is struggling to hold on to power in the face of modernization. In Deshpande’s novel, tradition and modernity are locked in a battle for supremacy, with Jaya caught in the middle.

Deshpande’s novel is a powerful exploration of the clash between tradition and modernity in India. It is also a moving story of one woman’s journey of self-discovery.

Why Shashi Deshpande’s That Long Silence is a timeless classic

Shashi Deshpande’s That Long Silence is a timeless classic for a reason. It explores the dynamics of a family caught in the throes of change, and the impact that these changes have on individual relationships within the family. The characters are richly drawn and their stories are compelling. But what makes this novel so special is the way Deshpande captures the nuances of human relationships. The characters are not just defined by their roles within the family, but also by their interactions with each other. These interactions are often complex and multi-layered, reflecting the reality of life itself.

Deshpande’s writing is beautiful and evocative. She has a gift for creating vivid images and for capturing the subtleties of human emotions. That Long Silence is a novel that stays with you long after you’ve finished reading it. It is a timeless classic that deserves to be read and re-read.


That Long Silence is a beautifully written novel that explores the depths of human emotions. The story follows the life of Antara, a woman who has been trapped in an abusive marriage for years. Through her journey, we see how she slowly starts to find her voice and break free from the silence that has been forced upon her. The novel is a powerful reminder of the strength of the human spirit and how even in the darkest of times, hope can still be found.