An Unfinished Song (1913), reveals an interesting perspective on the Hindu nature and European and American cultural influences in India as of the early 20th century. Ghosal was the first female Bengali novelist to be published, a leader of the woman movement there, and a highly influential writer. Ghosal translated the work into English herself. Frankly, her prose and verse speak to some universally understood differences between men and women, such as: "A woman may be cruel in a moment when anger controls her, but she cannot resist the pleading of love, that melts her heart when nothing else will." From the novel's preface:
"This is a story of life among the Reformed Party of Bengal, the members of which have to some extent adopted western customs. It shows the change that touch with Europe has brought upon the people of India, but in their inner nature the Hindus are still quite different from western races. The ideals and traits of character that it has taken thousands of years to form are not affected by a mere external change. This story, it is true, touches on one side of Indian life only, for in a small book it is difficult to depict many of the numerous phases of our Society; still I trust it will give the western reader some insight into the Hindu nature."
Return to the Swarnakumari Ghosal library.