Ice Candy Man

Ice-Candy-Man has strong women characters who want to forge their independent identity.

Ice-Candy-Man has strong women characters who want to forge their independent identity. In a patriarchal set-up which is essentially discriminatory against women and emphasizes on conditioning them for life-long and willing subjugation to men, the women of Ice-Candy-Man are not only conscious of their desires, but also eagerly assertive about their independent handling of situations.
The male characters, despite the fact that they initiate almost all events of the novel, remain peripheral and apathetic, lacking the will to change and transcend their circumstances. The women characters "subtly but effectively subvert the ingrained elements of patriarchy, privileging female will, choice, strength along with the feminine qualities of compassion and motherhood.” Ice-Candy-man can undoubtedly be termed as a feminist novel—the traditional novel eulogizes the heroic qualities of men only, while in feminist narratives women acquire such attributes by their active involvement in and control of situational contexts. Lenny, the narrator in Ice-Candy-Man is also the centre of the novel, retaining her independent identity in diverse situations. Her attitude towards her nameless cousin significantly portrays the feminist need for assertive equality. At this point it shall be interesting to note that all women's writing may not be necessarily feminist. A piece of writing which justifies, propagates or perpetuates discrimination against women cannot be termed as feminist. Only that artistic work which sensitizes its readers to the practices of subjugation and opposes them can be treated as being feminist in nature. Ice-Candy-Man not only sketches and critically reviews the dehumanizing patriarchal norms engendering a discriminatory social climate, but also portrays the struggle against them, as well as the desire to manifest an assertive self-will on the part of its women characters....