Read Source B carefully. What are the common features of city life that the authors note? What are the contradictory experiences they point to?

Q.:- Read Source B carefully. What are the common features of city life that the authors note? What are the contradictory experiences they point to?

Source B
Contradictory Experiences of Cities Kali Prasanna Singh wrote a satire in Bengali describing an evening scene in the Indian part of Calcutta around 1862:
Gradually the darkness thickens. At this time, thanks to English shoes, striped Santipur scarfs [sic] and Simla dhuties, you can’t tell high from low. Groups of fast young men, with peals of laughter and plenty of English talk are knocking at this door and that. They left home when they saw the lamps lighted in the evening and will return when the flourmills begin to work … Some cover their faces with scarfs [sic] and think that no one recognizes them. It is the evening of… a Saturday and the city is unusually crowded. Hutam Pyancher Naksha, a collection of short sketches on urban life in Calcutta, 1862. Translated by Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay.
In 1899, G.G. Agarkar wrote about Bombay:
‘The enormous expanse of Bombay city; its great and palatial private and governmental mansions; broad streets which accommodate up to six carriages abreast… the struggle to enter the merchants lanes; the frequent troublesome noise of passenger and goods trains whistles and wheels; the wearisome bargaining in every market, by customers who wander from place to place making enquiries with silver and notes in their pockets to buy a variety of commodities; the throngs of thousands of boats visible in the harbour… the more or less rushed pace of official and private employees going to work, checking their watches … The clouds of black smoke emitted by factory chimneys and the noise of large machines in the innards of buildings … Men and women with and without families belonging to every caste and rank travelling in carriages or horseback or on foot, to take the air and enjoy a drive along the sea shore in the slanting rays of the sun as it descends on the horizon …’
G.G. Agarkar, ‘The Obverse Side of British Rule or our Dire Poverty’



Common Features

(i) Both the cities are highly crowded and the pace of life is rushed.
(ii) Colonial influences are visible on the people’s clothing, conversation and leisure activities.
Contradictory Experiences
(i) In Kolkata, there is a distinction between private life and public life the young men dress in Western style and enjoy the night life, but do not want to be recognized. This is not there in Mumbai.
(ii) In Kolkata, caste/class differences are not visible due to common Western dress while in Mumbai they are not there due to the work culture.


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