An Intriguing Journey of Delusion to Reality in Malamud’s The Fixer
Twenty-first century is meant for revolutions. Revolution in wider spectrum, in every field of Science, Economics, Technology, Management, Engineering, Archeology and more specifically and poignantly in Literature. Twenty-first century is an age of revolution and counter revolution. It revolves with a notion that ideas govern the world. Man’s intelligence plays a vital role in every field but at the same time it drags the whole universe into a terrific situation. It also created a needless hate, callous cruelty and senseless violence and are vulnerably practiced by human being to impose the same on one another.
This article exposes the realization of mankind through the sanctification of sufferings. In today’s world everyman’s life is embedded with sufferings. The World in which we are living is crammed with angsts and existential trauma. It offers a paralysed hope for human beings, however man has to wrestle with his sufferings to attain a miniature amount of happiness and sufferings which mold us to be good human beings. The role of conversion would not have taken place without the act of suffering. This vital concept is powerfully handled by the Jewish-American writer, Bernard Malamud in his novel, The Fixer. The Fixer is a classic example for the existential ideology that catharsis of human being happens only through suffering. He proposed “Every man is a Jew” (94). He looks upon a Jew as a paradigm of human values and not a creature of a chosen tribe. His works intend that suffering and love are common to all men.
Malamud was born on April 26, 1914 in the United States. He was the son of Russian Jewish Immigrants. He is one of the most compassionate writers of the twenty first century. Humanism is the central idea in his novels. His novels are more realistic and humanistic by nature. It pokes his readers profoundly into the roots of ungovernable human feelings. Even Hasan admits, in the view of humanistic mode in Malamud’s writings, “What is to be human, to be humane is his subject: connection, indebtedness, resensibilty, these are his moral concerns”(56).
The Fixer is based on a real occurrence of Anti - Semitism known as ‘Affaire Beiliss’ in September 1913 in czarist Russia. Mendal Beiliss, a Jew was criminated of killing a Christian young boy for a ritual murder. Though he was declared innocent by the court, the case ended in deadlock. Yakov, the protagonist of the story enjoys his freedom. His parents were dead, his wife had left him and he has no children. His job necessitates only a bag of tools, he is a fixer by profession, and he was free from the worldly restrains. He left the Shtetl free to set off and to see the world.
The novel opens with the sad image of a dead poor Russian boy found near by a Brick-factory. His body was rotten and stabbed with wounds. After the funeral ceremony a handful of leaflets were distributed to the people. Leaflets contained an...