Jonaki Mukherjee’s Unvanquished: The Fight Beyond Justice is a collection of ten short, audacious, and inspiring stories. It is purely a work of Jonaki’s fearless attitude and her concern towards the unprivileged, weak and uneducated women. In ten stories in the book, the author has tried to raise different issues that impact women. Early marriage, the role of housewife, dowry, domestic violence and others. The treatment of these short stories is mostly in a certain format – beginning with problems and ending with the solutions, or rather resolutions. The writing of Jonaki Mukherjee emphasises contemporary issues that women face on the ground minus the big talks that we are often served in lit fests and seminars. True stories bringing to life the actual issues of women… that’s it!
The author, in her book, has come up with the issue of patriarchy. Our country is developing. People are growing. Women are thriving. We see developments and advancements all around us, in almost every facet of life – infrastructural, economic, environmental, technological, scientific and so on. Then, from where comes the issue of male dominance? However, it is sad to say that, our society is lacking growth and development as far as patriarchy is concerned. In the educated sector, the rate is certainly low. But, in the uneducated and marginalised sphere of society, women are still becoming victims of male authority. In this book, Jonaki has tried to showcase this horrible side of society and she’s helped them in getting justice.
Each of the ten stories portrays different perspectives of patriarchal society. The first story ‘Damini’ pictures sexual violence. The second story, The Gift of God – Debdatta, reflects beating up the wife and the girl kid and giving them mental tortures. The third story, The Perfect Wife, discusses the respect, independence and amount of money a housewife is entitled to in return for all her selfless services. The fourth story, Mayaa’s Tale, presents how a male child imposes his rights on her illiterate mother. The fifth story, Parbati’s Predicament, paints the shades of the extra-marital affair of the husband and how the wife and kids are being abandoned for all the tortures and struggles. The sixth story, Rays of Hope – The Story of Asha, describes the tale of a drunkard and suspicious husband. The rest of the stories continue narrating the impact of male dominance on women and kids. Though each story starts from a darker note of the life of the victim, they end on the brighter side, showing the hopes and bold faces of victims. This makes the book awe-inspiring.
This book is the outcome of the author’s years of experience as a counsellor. All these years, Jonaki has counselled many women, guided them and helped them take difficult decisions in their lives. And through this book, she has brought stories of their courage before the world. And that is the reason she has dedicated her book to “All the Women who bleed, who fight. And don’t give up.” It shows the heroic side of the author. At the end of every story, there is a section called Author’s Speak. This section gives Jonaki’s interpretation of the said woman’s story of struggle, violence and so on.
After reading this book, you will be filled with mixed emotions. On the one side, the feeling of compassion will embrace you in its grip. While on the other side, you will be left outraged at the ridiculing and disrespectful behaviour of men towards their wives, and women in general. As the book raises a serious issue prevalent in society, the author has been straightforward in her approach. The writing style is lucid. The author has managed to keep her stories well within the reach of moderate readers, with basic knowledge of the English language but a somewhat better understanding of the literary standard. The author has narrated the stories in a simple but impactful manner. These heart-rendering stories will bring to the readers the horrors that women have suffered because of the callous attitude of society.
You can also read these stories by getting a copy of the title by Jonaki. Click below to buy Unvanquished: The Fight Beyond Justice from Amazon India.
Review by Literature News Contributor
Unvanquished: The Fight Beyond Justice by Jonaki Mukherjee – Book Review
- Literature News Rating
Unvanquished: The Fight Beyond Justice by Jonaki Mukherjee is a collection of 10 short stories that narrate the stories of 10 brave women who suffered but came out victorious with their willpower and strength. A must-read title for all!