Tag Archives: The Doctor’s Word

“An Astrologer’s Day” and “The Doctor’s Word”

“…He knew no more of what was going to happen to others than he knew what was going to happen to himself next minute. He was as much a stranger to the stars as were his innocent customers. Yet he said things which ┬ápleased and astonished everyone” (Narayan 2).

“He never believed that agreeable words ever saved lives. He did not think it was any of his business to provide unnecessary ┬ádope when as a matter of course Nature would tell them the truth in a few hours. However, when he glimpsed the faintest sign of hope, he rolled up his sleeve and stepped into the arena…” (Narayan 17).

Narayan, R.K. Malgudi Days. New York: Penguin, 2006.

Notes: Both these stories, and many of the others, share similar character types and story themes. The first quote from “An Astrologer’s Day” and the second from “The Doctor’s Word” portray main characters who are very self-aware of their commonality; they know they are not all-knowing or perfect in their professions, but will put on an act of professionalism when rupees are involved. There is a theme of a higher power (the stars and Nature) that rules over everyone, and the main characters work as mediums for this higher power, but understand they are beneath it.