Writer Sree Parvathy is set to launch her new book Meenukal Chumbikunnu at Children’s Park theatre near Marine drive in Kochi on Sunday 14th May, 2017.
The novel builds on the foundation laid by Madhavi Kutty and V. T. Nandhakumar on the topic of same sex love.
“I took inspiration from the experiences of the people around me and it gave me courage to write the book,” says Parvathy. In her words, the book goes deeper than simply portraying the physical aspect of a lesbian relationship. “I have tried to incorporate the thoughts, fears and above all the love of a homosexual couple in the novel,” she added.
Initially, the book was set to launch at St. Teresa’s Women’s college. However, the venue had to be changed in view of the college management’s hesitation in launching of the book, after learning about its theme, as Parvathy alleges. “They were okay with it, but then they found out through brochures about the theme of the book, that is when everything changed,” says the novelist.
Meenukal Chumbikunnu is a 129-page book which narrates the story of the love and affection between two characters, Thara and Agnus. The plot also brings to light socio-religious ideologies which plague our society even to this day. The story is narrated through the eyes of Thara, and goes on to show how her life changes after an encounter with a woman.
Parvathy says, “I have seen and heard about a lot of people who has kept all their feelings within themselves and it gave me the drive to work on this book.”
In a patriarchal society such as in India, the mere usage of words like ‘gay’, ‘lesbian’ are still considered as taboo. The thought of a same-sex relationship, as portrayed in the novel is, to this date, largely looked down upon in the Indian society. “There are people out there, who need to be heard, says Parvathy, adding that, “there were challenges but I didn’t want those challenges to stop me from getting my words out.”
Renowned Malayalam Film director, actor and activist, Joy Mathew, was the one to write the prelude to the book. According to Parvathy, “He is the kind of a person, who doesn’t care what others think about him. He is honest, he has the mind to tell things openly and he is not scared to speak his mind. That is why I approached him to write prelude to my book.”
Writers Tanuja S Bhattathiri and Kavitha Nair will be present at the launch of the book, scheduled at 3 pm at Children’s Park theatre, along with Parvathy’s family, friends and other dignitaries.