Stephen Gill’s novels….
Vesta Publications, PO Box 1641, Cornwall, Ont.
K6H 5V6 Canada
ISBN: 0-919806-15-5, $10, PB, 1977
A thought-provoking novel that illustrates the frustrations
and anguish of the protagonist, who moves in and out of
love affairs with married women, regretting and
self-condemning all the while that this is against his
principles. Why he repeatedly does so is a question that
sets the tone of the story.
The location shifts from
giving insights into the way of life, the socio-political structure,
the educational system
and the moral values of
country which is just a name to most nations.
EXCERPTS From the Interview By Prof. Dr. Sarangi that
Appeared in The Atlantic Literary Review, July-Sept. &
Oct. -Dec. 2004, vol. 5, No. 3-4, Pages: 164- 183
My novel Why is the
story of the protagonist who gets in and out of love affairs with married women. Why he does
so sets the tone of the book. The story is also about boredom and the cultures
of Why revolves around Rubin Motard,
who is born and brought up in
while, he goes to
one hand Why is a story of Rubin's running in and out of
love affairs with married women. On the other, it is a story of three cultures and
their views towards love. I have attempted to show that love in
I had tried the technique of ending the story abruptly before in most of my short stories. I have used this technique also in my subsequent novels. It is because I don't want my readers to feel relieved or satisfied after the story is over--- I want them to feel a thirst-- I want to upset them-- I want my reader to think even after the narrative is over. After all that is life. Concerning the question why the protagonist falls in love with married women I can say that there is some clue in the novel.
Protagonists of both these novels have a weakness for whiskey and both novels end abruptly. Besides, mother plays key roles in both novels, though this role is clearer in Why because the elopement of Ruben=s mother is vital for the development of the story. It also ends with a note on his mother when Ruben discovers by chance that all the married women he had loved resembled his mother in one way or the other. My next novel Immigrant also opens and ends with a note on mother, but her presence is not vital for the progress of the plot.
Time plays important parts in both the novels. Both novels move forward and backward in time. This happens when the protagonists think of their past and future. Though I have tried to make the transition slow and smooth, yet it is difficult for an average reader to move along with the time easily. I have decided not to employ this technique any more in my next novel. In other words, the story of my fourth novel will be moving only forward, making it easier to read.
discovered that my novel Why is liked mostly by males whereas women, no matter which culture they
are from, dislike the main character. I have also discovered that mostly newcomers and those who
wish to come to
When I was writing Why,
I was reading Dylan Thomas and James Joyce. Being under their influence, I
wrote Why to be enjoyed at more than one level. The part of the story that is set in