The Ghat of The Only World Summary in English and Hindi Pdf. The Ghat of The Only World is written by Amitav Ghosh.
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The Ghat of The Only World Summary in English by Amitav Ghosh
About the writer Amitav Ghosh
|11 July 1956 (age 63 years), Kolkata
|Delhi School of Economics, University of Oxford
|Jnanpith Award, Sahitya Akademi Award, Ananda Puraskar, Dan David Prize, Padma Shri
|Booker Prize, International Booker Prize
The Ghat of The Only World Theme
This chapter is written by the narrator in memory of his friend, Shahid. They become friends when they stay in the same neighbourhood in the United States. Both of them have a lot in common and love to spend time together. Shahid is a cancer patient and urges the narrator to write about him when he dies. The narrator keeps his promise and pays a tribute to his friend by writing this piece about him after his death.
The Ghat of The Only World About the Characters
The Narrator: The Narrator (Amitav Ghosh) is a well known author. He comes in contact with Shahid (a poet from Srinagar) and they became good friends. He writes this piece on Shahid, after his death as he had promised him to write about him.
Shahid: Shahid is a poet and a close friend of the narrator. He teaches at colleges and universities in the United States and is a lively and sociable person. He is diagnosed with cancer but is not demoralised by his impending.
The Ghat of The Only World Summary in English
Shahid Talks about his Approaching Death
The narrator had called Agha Shahid Ali on 25th April, 2001 to remind him that they had been invited by a friend at his house for lunch. Shahid was undergoing treatment for cancer at that time but was able to speak and move around. He had occasional lapses of memory. As the narrator was talking to Shahid, Shahid had a blackout and feared that he might die. Shahid was fine after some time and told the narrator that he was suffering from cancer and would die in a few months. The narrator tried to reassure Shahid that he would be fine. However, Shahid ignored his reassurances and urged him to write about him when he died. The narrator wanted to avoid writing about his friend’s death but finally agreed to do so.
First Meeting of the Narrator and Shahid
The narrator and Shahid lived a few blocks away in Brooklyn, USA. The narrator had read Shahid’s poetry collection “The Country Without a Post Office” in 1997 long before he had met him. Shahid belonged to Kashmir and had studied in Delhi. The narrator also studied in Delhi and they both got in touch through common friends in 1998. They were no more, than acquaintances till they moved to Brooklyn, USA in the year 2000. In Brooklyn, they met for meals and discovered that there was a lot in common between them. They both loved rogan josh, Roshnara Begum and Kishore Kumar and had an attachment for old Bollywood films. However, they were indifferent to cricket.
Shahid was a sociable and witty person. He had many friends and liked to have people around him. He had the ability to convey the normal things in the most magical way. He lived on the seventh floor of a newly renovated building where he used to organise a lot of parties and invite his friends, relatives, students and poets.
Even after being diagnosed with cancer, he continued holding these parties at his home. He would plan the parties in a meticulous way and take special interest that the food cooked in the party was up to the mark. Apart from Kashmiri food, he liked Bengali food a lot. He also loved the music of Begum Akhtar.
Shahid as a Teacher
Shahid taught in various colleges and universities in the United States. Once the narrator got a chance to be with him when he gave a lecture at Baruch College in the spring semester of the year 2000. This was to be Shahid’s last class. His students loved him and were sad that he would be leaving. They had printed a magazine and dedicated the issue to him. However, Shahid was not at all overcome with sadness. He was lively from the beginning to the end of the lecture.
Shahid’s time in America
Shahid moved to America in 1975. His brother was already there when he came to America. Later his two sisters joined them there. However, parents continued to live in Srinagar. He used to come to India in the summer months every year and stayed with his parents in Srinagar.
Effects of the Violence in Kashmir on Shahid
Shahid was a witness to the violence in Kashmir that seized the region from the late 1980s onwards as he used to stay there in the summer every year. The violence and the deterioration of the political situation in Kashmir had a powerful effect on him. This became one of the central subjects of his work. Although he was anguished about Kashmir’s destiny, Shahid did not see himself as a victim. He had an all inclusive vision towards religion.
Stopping of Shahid’s Medication
The narrator recalls a telephone conversation between Shahid and him on 5th May. Shahid had undergone a scan that was expected to reveal whether the chemotherapy he was getting was having the desired effect on him or not. When he called Shahid to inquire about the test result, he was told that the doctors have stopped all his medications and had given him an year or less to live. Shahid wanted to make his will and leave for Kashmir after that as he wanted to die there. He later changed his mind and decided to be laid to rest in Northampton due to logistical and other reasons.
Narrator’s Last Meeting with Shahid
The narrator met Shahid the last time on 27th October, 2001 Shahid was at his brother’s house and was able to talk intermittently. He seemed to be calm and contended although he was aware of his impending death. He was surrounded by his family and friends. He died peacefully in his sleep at 2 am on 8th December, 2001. The narrator felt a vast void after his death and remembered his presence in his living room where Shahid had once read “I Dream I Am at the Ghat of the Only World.”
The Ghat of The Only World Chapter Highlights
- The narrator calls Shahid on 25th April, 2001 to remind him that he is coming to pick him up as they had been invited by a friend for lunch. Shahid suffers a blackout and talks about his imminent death. He asks the narrator to write about him after his death, to which he agrees.
- The narrator and Shahid met in New Delhi through common friends. They were acquaintances there. Their friendship developed when they stayed in the same neighbourhood in Brooklyn, United States.
- Both Shahid and the narrator had a great deal in common. They had a lot of common friends and loved rogan josh, Roshanara Begum, Kishore Kumar and old Bollywood films.
- Shahid lived in a spacious apartment on the seventh floor in Brooklyn. He belonged to Kashmir and his parents still used to live there. He went to India every summer and stayed with his parents.
- Shahid was a sociable person and had many friends. He wrote poetry and taught at colleges and universities in the United States. He was an admirer of good food and used to hold parties regularly at his flat. He invited his friends, relatives, authors, poets and his students to these parties.
- He was loved by his students and continued to hold parties even after being diagnosed with cancer. He was also very witty and never lost a chance to show his wit.
- Shahid was a witness to the violence in Kashmir that started from late 1980s onwards as he used to visit Kashmir in summer every year. This left an indelible mark on him and was one of the central themes in his poetry. However, Shahid did not see himself as a victim and had an all-inclusive vision towards religion.
- As per the narrator, Shahid’s medications were stopped a few months before his death as they were not having the desired effect on him. He wanted to go to Kashmir and die there but changed his plans due to logistical and other reasons.
- The narrator last met Shahid on 27th October, 2001. He seemed to be content and had made peace with death. Shahid breathed his last on 8th December, 2001 and was buried in Northampton.
The Ghat of The Only World Word Meanings
Word – Meanings
expatriate – a person who lives outside their native country
lucid – able to speak clearly
lapses – a brief or temporary failure of concentration, memory or judgement
thumbing – turn over pages with or as if with one’s thumb
Jocularity – in a funny manner
mumbled – to speak quietly or in an undear way so that the words are difficult to understand
innocuous – completely harmless
quizzical – seeming to ask a question without saying something
blackout – a short period when someone suddenly becomes unconscious
malignant – likely to get worse and lead to death
entrusting – to give someone a thing or a duty for which they are responsible
recitative – in music, words that are sung as if they are being spoken
bereavement – the death of a close relation or friend
imperative – something that is extremely important or urgent
fiercely – extremely
conceive – to invent a plan or an idea
acquaintance – a person that you have met but do not know well
impede – to slow something down or prevent an activity from making progress at its previous rate
trivial – having little value or importance
poignance – the quality of causing or having a very sharp feeling of sadness
hatched – to make a plan
conviviality – friendly and making you feel happy and welcome
transmute – to change something completely, especially into something different and better
scalp – the skin on the top of a person’s head where hair usually grows
suture – a stitch used to sew up a cut in a person’s body
groggier – weak and unable to walk correctly, usually because of tiredness or illness
buckled – to become bent often as a result of weakness
beaming – used to describe a smile that is very wide and happy
gleefully – in a happy or excited manner
gregariousness – the quality of liking to be with other people
split-level – having floors on slightly different levels with a few stairs connecting them
cavernous – having a very large open space inside it
waterfront – a part of a town or city that is next to an area of water such as a river or the sea
ghat – a set of steps leading down to a river or lake
foyer – a room in a house or apartment that leads from the front door to other rooms
flinging – to throw something suddenly and with a lot of force
dour – gloomy in appearance
invariably – always
perpetual – continuing forever in the same way
carnival – a lively festival
sniffed – to smell something
legendary – very famous and admired or spoken about
prowess – great ability or skill
radically – completely
explicitly – directly and in a clear and exact way
prefigured – to show or suggest that something will happen in the future
exactitude – the quality or an instance of being exact
recurrent – happening again many times
extinct – not now existing
haunted – to cause repeated suffering or anxiety
cuisine – a style of cooking
abiding – A memory or feeling that you have had for a long time and that is not likely to change
repartee – conversation that is full of clever and funny comments
exasperated – extremely annoyed and impatient because things are not happening in the way you want or people are not doing what you want them to do
Wildean – relating to or characteristic of Oscar Wilde or his works, especially in being witty
evident – obvious
adored – to love and respect someone deeply
subdued – quiet and slightly sad or worried
sparkling – very lively and interesting
incarnate – in human form used for emphasising that someone is very similar to what has just been mentioned
brimming – to be full of something
clasping – to hold your hands together with fingers of one hand in between the fingers of the other
feigned – to pretend to have a particular feeling
behold – to see or look at someone or something
unmitigated – complete
vibrant – lively and exciting
intermittent – happening sometimes but not regularly or often
mounting – increasing, especially in a way that makes a situation worse
irony – something that has a different or opposite result from what is expected
anguished – having or showing extreme pain or suffering
resolutely – to be determined in character, action or ideas
embrace – to accept something enthusiastically
fixture – an event that happens at a regular time and place
ecumenical – involving or uniting members of different religions
accouterments – other things that are needed for an activity
assiduous – taking great care that everything is done as well as it can be
fanaticism – very strong religious or political beliefs that make someone behave in an unreasonable way
shrine – a religious place built to remember a particular holy person or event
minaret – a tall, thin tower on or near a mosque from which Muslims are called to pray
archive – a collection of historical records relating to a place, organisation or family
martyr – someone who suffers or is killed because of their religious or political beliefs
inextricably – unable to be separated
Chemotherapy – the treatment of disease using chemicals
put off – to delay or move an activity to a later time
preambles – an introduction to a speech or piece of writing
dazed – very confused and unable to think clearly
logistical – relating to the process of planning and organising to make sure that resources are in the places where they are needed, so that an activity or process happens effectively
vicinity – the area around a place
overlaid – If a sound, taste, smell or feeling is overlaid with another one, enough of the other one is added to be noticeable
afterlife – the life, for example in heaven, that some people believe begins after death
consolation – something that makes someone who is sad or disappointed feel better
void – a feeling of unhappiness because someone or something is missing.