The Unhealing Scars: ‘Her’ Narratives of Partition

Main Article Content

Dr. Trayee Sinha


Literature reflects society in various ways. Displacement implies crisis of identity. The history of colonialism has occupied a large space in portraying the displacement of individuals across cultures. It has left a wound in everybody’s heart since driving an individual away from his/her native land is synonymous to deprive him/her of the right to breathe. Partition narratives form the part and parcel of displacement as a separate branch of studies. When a nation is fractured the trauma of losing one’s land creates a wound in the psyche and it has been contextualized by various writers during the pre and post phases of partition. They have focused on the physical, mental, social and above all the psychological wounds of individuals who have lost their native land. The documentation of partition narratives is of various layers and gender discourse is a significant component of this. Partition has revealed the hidden wounds of women’s bodies which have always been the site of oppression. They were abducted, raped, mutilated and they have been left as mere living beings. The present paper attempts to explore the effect of partition on women through the analysis of short stories written by Shobha Rao. Urvashi Butalia, Nivedita Menon, Kamla Bhasin have been extensively exploring the displacement of women in the context of partition and their narratives focus on the traumatic experiences of displacement and how that reduce their identities since they are merely considered as ‘bodies’. Shobha Rao, known as an American novelist immigrating from India has extensively focused on women’s oppression in various contexts. In the collection of short stories called An Unrestored Woman Rao is concentrating on the abducted women being returned to their own lands in the context of the Abducted Persons (Recovery and Restoration) Act in 1949. The proposed paper is going to examine Rao’s texts in the context of partition to trace the nature of displacement, trauma and quest to find their own identity.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...

Article Details

How to Cite
Dr. Trayee Sinha. “The Unhealing Scars: ‘Her’ Narratives of Partition”. The Creative Launcher, vol. 8, no. 1, Feb. 2023, pp. 30-38, doi:10.53032/tcl.2023.8.1.04.
Research Articles


Butalia, Urvashi. The Other Side of Silence: Voices from the Partition of India. Viking, 1998.

Smita Tewari Jassal and Eyal Ben-Ari eds. Partition Motifs in Contemporary Conflicts. Sage, 2007.

Chughtai, Ismat. Roots (V. Adil and A. Bhalla Trans.) In A. Bhalla (Ed.), Stories About the Partition of India. Vol 1 (9-20) Manohar Publishers, 2012.

Das, Veena. Critical Events: An Anthropological Perspective on Contemporary India. OUP, 1995.

Manchanda, R. Contesting ‘Infantalisation’ of Forced Migrant Woman. In N.C Behera (Ed.), Gender, Conflict and Migration (pp 205-226). Sage Publications, 2006.

Menon, Ritu and Kamla Bhasin. (1998). Borders and Boundaries: Women in India’s Parition. Rutgers University Press, 1998.

Menon, Ritu. “Do Women have a Country” ed. Ivekovic R and Mostov Julie, From Gender to Nation. Zuban, 2002.

Pandey, G. Remembering Partition: Violence, Nationalism and History in India. Cambridge University Press, 2001. DOI:

Pritam, A. “The Skeleton”. In Khushwant Singh (Trans.), The Skeleton and that Man (pp. 1-50). Sterling, 1987.

Ramone, J. Postcolonial Theories. Palgrave Macmillan, 2011. DOI:

Rao, Shobha. An Unrestored Woman. Flatiron Books, 2016.

Singh, J. Women Amidst the Partition. In Violence, Trauma and Loss. Retrieved from http://

Young, James E. Writing and Rewriting the Holocaust. Indiana University Press, 1988.