This lesson is a brief introduction to, and an appreciation of, the themes, style, and message of R.Chudamani’s short stories.

    R.Chudamani is a noted Tamil writer, who has earned a unique reputation in her own way. Born in 1931, she started writing in 1954. A drop-out from school, she is a self-taught individual with an identity of here own. A Tamil writer mainly, she has also written in English. Her fictional output has been significant, which includes about 600 Tamil short stories contained in 19 anthologies published between the years 1969 & 1996.

    Antha Neram (அந்த நேரம்), Ilantha Magudam (இழந்த மகுடம்), Oru Inthiyan Irukkiran (ஒரு இந்தியன் இறக்கிறான்), Cuvarotti (சுவரொட்டி), Amma (அம்மா), Kinaru (கிணறு), Kasthaman Kolangal (ஹஸ்தமன கோலங்கள்), Kaavalai Meeri (காவலை மீறி) are titles of some of the collections. Apart from her own writing in English, she has been widely translated into English and in a number of Indian Languages by others.

    Chudamani’s stories can be broadly classified into two categories. There are idea-centered stories and stories in which the emotive content becomes a dominating factor. A selective bunch of stories have been briefly; summarized in this lesson for your understanding of the themes and their execution. The flower-selling little girl in Poopen (பூப்பெண்) who in her innocence longs for love and affection from her buyers is one of the child characters, which Chudamani delineates with a psychological insight. The stories Mananillai (மனநிலை), Ulunarvu (உள் உணர்வு), Ul uruthal (உள் உறுத்தல்) belongs to this kind of stories. The author has also penned stories which deal with of historical themes. The moving depiction of Devaki, Lord Krishna’s mother, as a mother, who sobs out her heart having had to sacrifice the lives of her six children born before Krishna and the portrayal of Sanguthalai (சகுந்தலை), a self-respecting woman of tremendous moral courage, are instances that bare testimony to Chudamani’s artistic sensibility as a woman writer. A Kaleidoscopic variety of human characters-children, women, men, old and young - figure in her stories.

    Her language is simple and her syntax is concise and straight. She is an adept at making her message and reach any reader. Highly innovative in organizing he material, She gives her stories titles, which are immediately indicative of the themes and her style and diction command a rare verbal dignity and intelligibility.

    Chudamani is a widely published author whose career spans a period of 5 decades. Her superior craftsmanship and her portrayal of day-to-day life have give her a fine niche in the citadel of short fiction in Tamil.