“Durwan” is a word comprised of Urdu, Hindi and Persian roots. According to Oxford Dictionary, it means a porter or doorkeeper, yet in many cases, like Boori. A Real Durwan tells the tale of a 64 year old live in doorkeeper who trudges up and down the stairs keeping them clean with her reed broom that never leaves. “Yet there was a day were my feet touched nothing but marble.” (A Real Durwan, Boori Ma). Boori Ma is thinking about back when she used to.

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Boori Ma is introduced as a refugee victim of the Partition, the event that led to the creation of Pakistan from India. The use of direct characterisation in this story tells the readers that Boori Ma does her job well as a gatekeeper in ensuring the stairwell is kept spotless and that unknown or suspicious people are kept out of the residential area. Boori Ma is indirectly characterised to be a victim of the harsh and underprivileged means of life.

This was duraan shown how Boori Ma never really had the chance to live a better life after separation from her family. After getting a job as a durwan, the author made it seem that life would gradually improve for Boori Ma despite her hardships. Unfortunately, life for Boori Ma does not end well as she looses her job, home and life savings.

Boori maa an increasingly frail year-old woman, is the durwan live-in doorkeeper to an apartment building of Calcutta. Each day, she trudges up the stairs, lugging her reed broom and flimsy mattress behind her. As she sweeps, her raspy voice details the losses she has suffered because of Partition. She was separated from her husband, two daughters, and home.

Tied to the durwaj of her sari is a set of skeleton keys belonging to coffer boxes that housed her valuables. She chronicles the easier times in her life, the feasts and servants and marble floor of her home.

A Real Durwan by Jhumpa Lahiri

But her tales were so impassioned that no one could dismiss her outright. Each resident of the building had a different interpretation of her tales. Chatterjee believes she simply mourns her family and wraps herself in illusion. Nevertheless, her tales harmed no one and she was entertaining. Best of all, she kept the stairs spotlessly clean and the outside world at bay.

She routed away any suspicious person with a few slaps of her broom. Though there was nothing to steal from the apartments, the residents were comforted by her presence. Boori Ma suffers from sleepless nights.

Dalal, who has a soft spot for Boori Ma, comes to the roof to dry lemon peels. Boori Ma asks her to inspect her back for the mites she assumes durwaj her in her sleep.

Boori Ma talks again about her lost comforts — such comforts Mrs. The women commiserate and Mrs. Dalal offers to buy the woman new bedding.

She knows better than to sit on the furniture, so she crouches in doorways and takes in life from a distance. She visits The Dalals. Dalal asks her to help tote basins to his apartment. Dalal is not pleased. A basin does not make up for not having a phone or a fridge, or other amenities promised but not delivered. The argument rings through the building and Boori Ma does not ask about bedding.


She sleeps on newspaper that night. Dalal installs one basin — the first of the building — in his home and reao in the foyer for all of his neighbors to use. Instead of being xurwan by the gesture, the residents of the building are awash in resentment. To appease his wife after their argument, it is rumored that Mr. Dalal purchased lavish shawls and soaps. He takes her away for ten days and Mrs. Dalal z Boori Ma that she has not forgotten xurwan promise of renewed bedding.

While the Dalals are away, the other wives plan renovations and the stairs become choked by workmen. Unable to sweep, Boori Ma keeps to her roof, keeping an eye on her dwindling set of newspapers and wondering when she had her last glass of tea. She feels a tug at the end of her sari and finds her purse and skeleton keys gone.

When she returns to the building, she finds the basin has been torn out of the wall. The residents carry her up to the roof and accuse her of telling robbers about the new basin.

She tries to convince them, but after x of her lies, they say, how can they believe her now? The residents seek the advice of Mr. He comes to the conclusion that the building needs a real durwan to keep their valuables safe. The residents accuse Boori Ma of informing the robbers in negligence for her job. When Boori Ma protests,the residents continue to accuse her because of all her former unreliable stories. Mr Dalal is a plumbing salesman who lives with his disgruntled wife in the rdal that Boori Ma works in.

Mrs Dalal a generally kindhearted women who leads a dissatisfied life, although she has a soft spot for Boori as she is very kind to her offering to buy her a new set of bedding and giving her food when she can. It is the sorry tale of Boori ma, a refugee in Calcutta after Durwzn. In her past an affluent woman has now fallen to misfortune and self appoints herself as the Durwan or the gatekeeper of an apartment building.

It is story that appeals to the pathetic in us. Her incessant ramblings about her rich past and her comparisons between the past and the present life get on the nerves durwaan the apartment residents. In a bid to give the building a face lift they throw Boor ma out along with her boxes and baskets. The irony is that even the kind people like Mrs. Dalal get lost in the quagmire of vanity and selfishness. Write a note on the characteristics of the residents of the flat building and its neighborhood?

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By Website Contributors On Jul 27, Dalal was a resident of the flat building. Dalal stood on third floor. He worked in the office of wholesale distributor. Perhaps he did not ddurwan in the story of boori ma who durwsn been a refuge from East Bengal due to the partition of India. Dalal curwan not also durwam financially. They had to cook in kerosene oil. Even he promise his wife,that he would bring a fridge durwaj he could not bring it.

Their two roomed flat was broken. He could not manage all these as he worked in selling toilet parts of a wholesale distributor.

But after a long run his fortune smile on him when his distributors Profit had doubled and the distributor was going to open the second branch in Burdwan. Dalal was skillful worker. So for his sedulous performance over several years the distributor was promoting him to the manage the college street branch. Thus his hours of filling receipts for a distributor of rubber tubes and pipes had ended. Mr Dalaal had bought 2 ceramic basins and was returning home in happy mood. He thought as he had been a company manager some valuable vurwan who would come to meet him and the Basin in his room and on the stair well would impress them.

But when he reached home you have to face his wife. Then there was a quarrelling between them but in the morning walk men him to install the basin. But his wife was in a fierce mood because dyrwan did not get what she wanted. He spent her time in the let alone after her household works. reao

Short Story Analysis: A Real Durwan by Jhumpa Lahiri – The Sitting Bee

The residence of the flat building were not financially stable. They had no running water bath, water had to be stored in drums, Windows were without glass. Even to cook they used coal or kerosene.

No one of this particular flat building on much worth stealing. The second floor vido Mrs Misra was the only one with a telephone. When the residence of the flat building decided to renovate some had to Bater stack of a wedding bracelets, another had to pawn her sewing machine and to sell back a set of pudding bowls.

And Mr Chatterjee hot hot is self very cultured and decision maker had to gaze at the bamboo scaffold which presently surrounded his balcony and the Shutter Behind it. When the geal from the stairwell was eral they irritationally accused Boori maa for abetting the theft.

None believed her and accused her to endanger the security of the building. Chaterjee to get his advice but Mr Chatterjee a stupid and harmful decision maker told that whatever Boori maa said was out of ties. Then he proposed that as the building was renovated, they needed a real durwan. You might also like More from author. Welcome, Login to your account. Sign in Recover your password.