Shalom India Housing Society

Shalom India Housing Society (Women Unlimited, Rs 250) by Esther David depicts the dilemma of the last Bene Israeli Jews in India through a fictional society formed in Ahmedabad after the 2002 riots. Through the portrait of, among other things, generational conflict, David’s novel asks how the Bene Israelis connect with other Indian communities, and whether they ought to remain in India or leave for Israel. It also studies the concepts of home and social identity. Holding the narrative together is the prophet, Elijah, to whom everyone turns in times of trouble. David’s prose is unpretentious and firm.

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