“…aren’t we all pawns in the hands of Time, the greatest player of then all?”
The Palace of Illusions by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Its a message to those who say Feminism is a 20th-century thing. Need to turn the pages of history like Ramayana and Mahabharata and pick any female protagonist of that era. They are all female strong character, the unsung legends.
Divakaruni has not given only voice to Draupadi but to all women kind. She raises a lot of questions about society’s drama and drools, like education behavior, status, etc,. Somewhere we are all Draupadi trapped in different bodies asking the same questions again and again.
The legendary mythological opening gates shows the Draupadi’s childhood, the stories of her birth and the prophecy adjoints with her birth is well explained by Draupadi’s Dhai Ma. Draupadi tries to unveil every aspect of her many crossroads like “the days of adolescents”, “the day of Swayamvar”- later as the daughter of the kingdom Panchaal and the wife of the five Pandavas. Her destiny takes her to the Great War of Kuruksetra and lastly, her passage into the other world. The authoress doesn’t change the start nor disturbs its ending, but above all gave a fresh new prospectives. The images, the notions, the decisions, the feelings through Draupadi’s eyes- the woman who was destined to be a cause of the Great War.