The historical context of Paul Scott’s novel – The Jewel in the Crown – serves to explain and interpret a tragic love story between two characters; Daphne Manners and Hari Kumar. The love story serves to clarify and interpret the social/racial and historical significance of the time period in which it is set – 1942. Their love – a product as well as a victim of the time and events – is an allegory for the relationship between England and India – the White man and the Black man. The Jewel in the Crown demonstrates that the elements of life and love are colorless and timeless and that arrogance and hate are universal.
Through a historically accurate setting using imaginary characters we are shown the fictionalized city of Mayapore, India during the British Raj and told the “story of a rape, of the events that led up to it and followed it and of the place in which it happened” (Scott 3). The story is relayed to us, in the most part, through an unnamed narrator that began his quest for answers, concerning the Daphne Manners case, in 1964. He compiles testimonies and documents that reveal the events to us from a variety of realistic perspectives. The information is not given in chronological order but as a person who reminiscences would convey a story. The author effectively uses the characters, time-period and historical events to support the underlying theme of injustice, tragedy and the indomitable human spirit.
Daphne and Hari would never have met and fallen in love in any other place during any other time period. 1942, in India, was thei…
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…irs indicate she was cognizant of the potential consequences of her love for Hari, her rejection of Ronald Merrick and even of her death as a result of giving birth to the baby.
The story ends tragically for Daphne and Hari just as the story ends tragically for the England of old and the India of old – but out of their union a new story begins. Although the offspring of the encounter will not unlearn quickly the evils taught for all those generations before, there is now a hope, “the promise of a story continuing instead of finishing…established for the sake of the future rather than of the past” (Scott 461). The Jewel in the Crown is part historical novel, part mystery, part love story, part allegory (drjohnholleman 6/9/01) – and in all its parts, it will continue to reveal the darkness, in each of us, that has no connection to skin color.
The Jewel in the Crown : Daphne Manners
The Jewel in the Crown : Daphne Manners
Daphne Manners was a woman that was ahead of her time she was not prejudice in a hateful way. The prejudice she had was purely ignorance of the day and age. She did not dislike someone just because they were Indian. Daphne Manners even made negative comments about the prejudices that she saw happening. She ignored the social norms when she started falling for Hari Kumar. Had Miss Manners followed the standards for the day and age of the story she would never had given Hari a second look.
A woman that left India because her husband ” had to many Indian colleagues” for her liking raised Daphne Manners and she still was offended when she saw her friends abused by prejudices. (Pg 90 Scott, Paul. The Jewel in the Crown. [1996.] Vol. 1 of the Raj Quartet. Rpt. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.) While on the train Lili experienced a typical reaction from the English passengers they were riding with and Daphne Manners stated ‘ I get really angry about the kind of thing that happens over here.” (Pg 94 Scott, Paul. The Jewel in the Crown. [1996.] Vol. 1 of the Raj Quartet. Rpt. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.) In 1942, English colonists in India did not feel they needed to treat the native inhabitants with any form of humanity. Daphne Manners on the other hand knew that they deserve to be treated as humans. She said “Honestly Auntie, a lot of the with people in India don’t know they’re born.” (Pg 90 Scott, Paul. The Jewel in the Crown. [1996.] Vol. 1 of the Raj Quartet. Rpt. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.)
When Miss Manners interviewed at the hospital she talked with the Matron who told her “If your wise you’ll trade on all three [of her sponsors] but avoid too obvious an association with the fourth.” (Pg 97 Scott, Paul. The Jewel in the Crown. [1996.] Vol. 1 of the Raj Quartet. Rpt. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.) Matron was referring to the stigma that went with Lady Chatterjee. Daphne took a chance of not getting the position by telling her ” My real sponsor is Lady Chatterjee.” (Pg 97 Scott, Paul. The Jewel in the Crown. [1996.] Vol. 1 of the Raj Quartet. Rpt.