Love: Estha and Rahel

Hey everyone! I thought it would be interesting to write about Estha and Rahel’s relationship throughout the novel.

Both Rahel and Estha are seen to be the main characters of the novel. We mostly seem to see the world through Rahel’s eyes however, therefore we end up understanding her a little clearer than Estha.

From the beginning of the novel, the twins are written to be completely complementary halves of one another. The two even consider themselves to be “one” when they are together, and seem to be lost when they are apart. For example, Roy writes,

Rahel stood in the hotel room doorway, full of sadness… The sadness of Ammu’s loving her a little less. And the sadness of whatever the Orangedrink Lemondrink Man had done to Estha (110).

This quote shows the connection that Rahel and Estha always shared throughout their childhood. Rahel felt the pain that Estha had endured from the Orangedrink Lemondrink Man and is able to connect with him on another level. I think it can be inferred that Estha also feels the same connection to Rahel as she does to him.

When the twins are separated for 23 years, they realize that they are essentially not able to lead lives apart. We learn that the only reason Rahel really came back to Ayemenem, was because of Estha.

Estha and Rahel’s relationship turns out to be a bit unorthodox with the act of incest being presented at the end of the novel. However, I think that this act ties up the essence of the novel perfectly. From the beginning of the novel, the two considered one another as “one”. Their connection was stronger than anything, with the ability to break societies harsh standards against incest. Even when 23 years separated the two, they ended up finding their way back to each other. Overall, it is clear that the two are meant to be together and that they are not whole apart. Their love is obviously pure and real and it was very interesting to see their relationship pan out throughout the book.

One thought on “Love: Estha and Rahel

  1. Asta, you present a straightforward but compelling defense of the uncomfortable final scene — of the meaning and importance of their intimacy.

    I think, however anyone reads the scene (you can see my reading on my final video takes on the novel I posted this morning), it would be a mistake to focus on that scene and not focus on the familial and societal oppression that lead to that moment. Rahel is the only person who achieved a type of mutual recognition with Estha — and he needs her, not just because of their almost magical connection — but because no one else recognizes his trauma and gives him a place to process it.

    Like

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