Dialogue and Thought

“Sohini now realized that the woman was angry. ‘But I haven’t done anything to annoy her,’ she reflected. ‘She herself began it all and is abusing me right and left. I didn’t pick the quarrel. I have more cause to be angry than she has!’

‘Bitch, why don’t you speak! Prostitute, why don’t you answer me?’ Gulabo insisted.

(Anand p. 18).

In this section, single quotation marks are used to denote both Sohini’s internal thoughts and Gulabo’s external speech. Sohini’s discourse is reported in the same way as Gulabo’s and Sohini’s is not initially clearly laid out as being internal and quiet. However, based on Gulabo’s reaction, it is notably clear that Sohini did not actually speak. This convention may be used to imply a lack of meaningful difference between external and internal dialogue for Sohini, since she is described as ‘innocent and honest’. This could also be an implication for all of the characters, since many of them seem to very easily ‘betray’ and reveal their hidden feelings.