Questioning V.S. Naipaul’s Flawed World in The Mystic Masseur and A Bend in the River

Indrani Ramachandran, Rohimmi Noor


Acknowledged as one of the world’s finest writers in the English language, V.S. Naipaul’s cynicism has, over the decades, come to represent his very identity as a writer, so much so that any discussion about Naipaul’s brilliance as a writer almost always finds itself addressing his penchant for controversies that conspicuously come across in almost all his written works. This paper will explore such a negative stance taken by V.S. Naipaul towards Third World countries and people, namely Trinidad and Africa, as featured in his two works of fiction, The Mystic Masseur and A Bend in the River and, in the process, attempt to understand the reasons behind his doing so. Through the application of the concept of Nihilism, this paper shows that people in the two countries in question have an inherent sense of futility in them, and that Naipaul’s portrayal of them in a negative light is indeed based on these realities that he saw and experienced.



human flaws, humour, Nihilism, Trinidadian Indians

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