The god of little things


November 30, 2021

The God of Little Things is a semi-autobiographical book by the Indian writer and political activist Arundhati Roy. It is her first novel. On April 4, 1997, the English version of the book was published in New Delhi under the title The God of Small Things; In 1997 the German translation followed by Karl Blessing Verlag. Since the novel won the Booker Prize in 1997, Arundhati Roy has been using her fame to raise awareness of social, environmental and political issues. The author donated the Booker prize money and the royalties on some editions of her novel in Indian languages ​​to the civil rights movement against the Narmada Dam - she also donated the majority of the following prize money to social issues and projects.

History of origin

After Arundhati Roy had worked on her first literary work for five years with the support of her family and her husband Pradip Krishen, in May 1996 she was not confident that she would be able to publish her book at all: “It is a very fragile, personal book and I have never had any perspective about it. I considered going to an Indian publisher but they tend to give advances of Rs 5,000. However, I wasn't sure about finding a foreign publisher. I mean, why would anyone abroad be interested in the book? I am not very well educated. I haven't lived abroad. So it's not as though I am like Salman Rushdie or Vikram Seth. ”While looking for an agent, she met Pankaj Mishra, the editor of HarperCollins at the time. Enthusiastic about her novel, he sent the manuscript to three British publishers in June 1996 with the comment “This is the biggest book since Midnight’s Children.” Within three days, two of the publishers agreed to submit offers for the publication rights. Since Arundhati Roy did not have a fax machine himself, the offers were sent to a neighbor. Before she could finally make up her mind, David Godwin, the third recipient of her manuscript, had boarded a plane to India to become Arundhati Roy's first agent: “obviously, the book had touched him enough to get on a plane and come to a strange country. " Godwin went to work, and within a very short time eight publishers had submitted very high offers for British and continental European publishing rights. On the occasion of a visit to Vienna, Godwin summoned his author to New York, where the contract was signed with the renowned publishing house Random House and she received 500,000 pounds sterling for the international publication rights in 21 countries. The contract was made public in September 1996, and by the end of October 400,000 books had already been pre-ordered worldwide - the book has so far been published in 30 countries.


1997 - Booker Prize 2001 - Grand Prize of the World Academy of Cultures (“Grand Prix” of the “Académie Universelle de la Culture”), Paris 2003 - Prize for Cultural Freedom from the Lannan Foundation 2006 - Literature Prize of the "Sahitya Akademi" of the Indian government, specifically for their non-fiction book The Algebra of Infinite Justice, ISBN 0-00-714949-2 - rejected by Arundhati Roy Arundhati Roy was the first author from India to win the prestigious Booker Prize on October 14, 1997 - notably in the 50th year of India's independence from the British Empire; The God of Small Things is also the first debut work to be awarded the Booker Prize. "Dame" Gillian Beer, Professor of English Literature at Cambridge University and Chair of the Foundation Advisory Board, in her thanks on the occasion of the award ceremony: “With extraordinary linguistic inventiveness, Arundhati Roy funnels the history of south India through the eyes of seven-year-old twins. The story she tells is fundamental

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