Sita’s Curse by Sreemoyee Piu Kundu is an attempt to ask a few questions from its readers and the society as a whole as to how a woman is to react in the circumstances of a failed marriage? The book asks some very genuine questions as to how should a women react when a marriage is not satisfying her very basic and earthly desires of physical, mental and maternal pleasures. It depicts the hypocrisy of the society in pressurizing such women in abstaining from such desires and continuing with such a marriage in the name of the institution in itself.
This book is about Meera Patel (and a lot many women like her), a woman from the rural heartlands of Gujarat, It is about her dreams since her childhood, her needs, her marriage to a wealthy man, the shortcomings of her marriage, her belief system, the people she encounters in her life and finally the big step she takes to overcome all this.
What did I like in the book ?
I liked the questions that were raised, I also liked the way she shows the consequences when important questions are brushed aside and a woman’s needs are not taken care of. When there are shortcomings and such things are ignored in a marriage, we might end up seeing a result that might bring pain to everyone involved. This particular thing was portrayed very well.
Things I did not like :
The amount of sex in this book, it was really too much. It’s there everywhere, you cannot flip a few pages before running into a scene, a fantasy or something. I was feeling uncomfortable very often while reading the book.
The book starts off with a steamy scene where the protagonist goes to her fantasy world and extracts some self pleasure, everything there is described to the microscopic detail. I was like already uncomfortable, its not just that one place where the author does a deep dive but every few pages you see something of this sort. I understand it is a book that speaks about the desires of a woman but every few pages you get to speak about sex and describe it in microscopic detail, it unsettles the person who is reading it. “Ati sarvatra varjayet”, is all I got to say about it.
The link between the title and the story doesn’t come out well. I somehow did not find the connect.
I understand the demands of the body do play an important role in one’s life, while I am not the right person to speak about the importance of these aspects in the life of a woman, I am really astonished at the way the carnal pleasures become central to the existence of the protagonist. Described as the story of a middle-class Indian housewife’s urgent need for love, respect, acceptance and sexual fulfillment… sadly, she ends up finding only sexual fulfillment. Love, respect and acceptance seems to get drowned in the deluge.
No doubt some very legitimate questions were asked in the book, but there were no solutions on offer? Giving a solution to the problems mentioned would have made the book much better than what it currently is.
References to Gods and Goddesses could have been avoided, the mention of Goddess SITA in the first few pages of the book is in sour taste. However the author’s point about the goddess choice between Ram and Ravana was very heartfelt and true, but I think that is only because now we know the end of the Ramayana.
To sum it up, Sita’s Curse is not regular stereotype you see in the market, it is a book that asks tough questions to the Indian Society. On the flip side it has too much erotic content that might really make it a tough read. The questions and the good things of the book get pygmied in front of all that sexual and erotic content. For a person with a conservative mindset it might be a tough book to read.
The book left me a tad bit confused but barring the barrage of erotic content in the book it is a good read for somebody who is not very conservative.
Overall Rating : 3/5
You may buy the book from Flipkart here.