There is an old world charm about Kuppili Padma’s short stories collected in English translation as Salabhanjika And Other Stories. But, this oldness does not go back to the 50s or 60s. It takes time for the fact to register that there are no cell phones in her stories. A bit shocking when we discover also that there is no Facebook or Twitter or Messenger. In fact, even email is rare, gmail nonexistent. There is hardly any reference to webs and web surfing. We also slowly comprehend that these stories are about a transition period in our country when Information Technology was about to entrench itself here and Internet was about to step out from the shadows. In short, her stories are about the advent of globalization in our society and how it began to change the mindsets of people.
Again, that would be an idle statement if we fail to notice that her stories are totally about women. So, we have to modify our earlier assertion. Her stories, in this collection, are about the changes happening to women and their relationships with this world and the men who rule it, in the backdrop of a technological, economical and social paradigm shift.
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