Monday, 13 October 2014

Analysis of battle scenes in War and Peace


War and Peace (1869) is an epic historical-fiction novel by Leo Tolstoy about five Russian aristocratic families caught up in the Napoleonic Wars (1803–1815), in particular the French invasion of Russia (1812).

This essay will analyse two battles in the novel to see how Tolstoy uses certain literary techniques to bring them to life. First, I will analyse the Battle of Schongrabern (1805) to explain what these literary devices are; then I will use the Battle of Austerlitz (1805) to show how they all come together for an exhilarating battle experience – as if the reader were actually there as a participant in the fighting.

Battle of Schongrabern (1805)

Stream of consciousness

This is Tolstoy’s forte. The characters pour out their thoughts and feelings, so the reader is actually in their mind, and this often leads to great insight. For example, Tolstoy picks out a common, anonymous soldier, and we enter his mind: 

"One step beyond that boundary line is uncertainty, suffering, and death. And what is there? Who is there?—there beyond that field, that tree, that roof lit up by the sun? No one knows, but one wants to know. You fear and yet long to cross that line, and know that sooner or later it must be crossed and you will have to find out what is there.’ (This, of course, is the same technique used to great effect in Terrence Malick films, especially The Thin Red Line, 1998)

Later, as Nicholas, a regular soldier, gazes upon the battlefield, we can read his thoughts: ‘How beautiful the sky looked; how blue, how calm, and how deep! How bright and glorious was the setting sun!’


This is the most common literary device of Tolstoy’s battle scenes, and he never strays from it. He uses colour and light, including smoke, mist, rain, sun, even darkness, to paint a picture of the battlefield so it literally appears as a painting in the reader’s mind.

The battle begins on ‘a warm, rainy, autumnal day’ with a ‘curtain of slanting rain’ and ‘spread out in the sunlight far-off [soldiers and artillery were] glittering as though freshly varnished.’ Also ‘the little town [in the distance] could be seen with its white, red-roofed houses and … jostling masses of Russian troops.’

Also ‘the brilliance of the bright sunshine merged in a single joyous and spirited impression’ and ‘the sun was descending brightly upon the Danube and the dark hills around it.’

Smoke from the battle appears regularly as an image: ‘On the French side, amid the groups with cannon, a cloud of smoke appeared, then a second and a third almost simultaneously’; then, later: as ‘the infantry in their blue uniforms advanced …  Smoke appeared again but at irregular intervals’ and ‘a dense cloud of smoke arose’ from the battlefield.

Sight and Sound

Tolstoy relies heavily on these two senses, at the almost complete detriment of other senses (I could  find only one instance of smell in the entire battle).

The reader is always looking at the battlefield through the eyes of the soldiers as if he or she were an actual witness to the unfolding horror. For example: ‘Everyone got up and began watching the movements of our troops below, as plainly visible as if but a stone's throw away.’ Later, ‘Silence fell on the whole squadron. All were looking at the enemy in front and at the squadron commander, awaiting the word of command.’ To continue: ‘The soldiers without turning their heads glanced at one another, curious to see their comrades' impression.’ Finally: ‘All the officers and men … kept constantly looking at the patches appearing on the skyline, which they knew to be the enemy's troops.’

Then there is Sound, a powerful tool that really brings the battle alive: ‘grapeshot cracked and rattled’ and  ‘the artillery gun rang out with a deafening metallic roar, and a whistling grenade flew above the heads of our troops.’ Then:  ‘the clang of hoofs, as of several horses galloping, resounded on the planks of the bridge’ and ‘the bugle calls and the shouts of the enemy could be heard from the hill.’

Sight and sound are usually combined to increase the effect of war upon the reader: ‘the sun [that the officers and men were watching] came fully out from behind the clouds, and the clear sound of the solitary shot and the brilliance of the bright sunshine merged in a single joyous and spirited impression.’ Also ‘Nickolas saw nothing but the hussars running all around him … their sabers clattering.’ (Note also here the imagery of the sun and light, and, to an equal extent, the stream of consciousness)

Facial Expression

Facial expression is used to convey the anticipation of battle. For example: ‘Every face, from Denisov's to that of the bugler, showed one common expression of conflict, irritation, and excitement, around chin and mouth.’ To continue: ‘Cadet Mironov … was glancing at everyone with a clear, bright expression, as if asking them to notice how calmly he sat under fire.’

Then, as the horrors of war unfold, facial expression is used to convey the fear of the soldiers: ‘on all the bright faces of the squadron the serious expression appeared that they had worn when under fire.’ Also, ‘the colonel looked as he always did when at the front, solemn and stern’ and ‘the soldiers crowded against one another with terrified faces.’


Tolstoy often compares parts of the battlefield to other objects in life, so the reader can relate to the battle through a wider context. For instance: ‘like a fleck of white foam on the waves of the Enns, an officer squeezed his way along the men’ and ‘like a log floating down the river, an officers' or company's baggage wagon, piled high, leather covered, and hemmed in on all sides, moved across the bridge.’


The battle scene is littered with detail, from fieldglasses, knapsacks, and pies to mud on the uniforms. This makes the scene authentic. It is as if the reader were a journalist on the spot, taking note of all the detail. Look at all the detail in this scene: ‘A Cossack who accompanied Nesvitski had handed him a knapsack and a flask, and Nesvitski was treating some officers to pies and real doppelkummel.’ Later, Prince Nesvitski saw ‘waves of soldiers, shoulder straps, covered shakos, knapsacks, bayonets, long muskets, and … feet that moved through the sticky mud that covered the planks of the bridge.’


Finally, what would a battle scene be without action, and there is lots of it here. For example: ‘The French had time to fire three rounds of grapeshot before the hussars got back to their horses … the last round fell in the midst of a group of hussars and knocked three of them over.’ (Notice the detail: ‘three rounds’, ‘the last round’, and ‘three of them’)

Battle of Austerlitz (1805)

Now we will turn to the Battle of Austerlitz to see how all the literary tools of the writer come together to create a unique battle experience for the reader:

First there is imagery: ‘At five in the morning it was still quite dark’ and there is ‘the smoke of the campfires.’ Then the soldiers are stirred into action, accompanied by detail: ‘the regiment began to move: the soldiers ran from the fires, thrust their pipes into their boots, their bags into the carts, got their muskets ready, and formed rank.’ This is quickly followed by sound: ‘the monotonous tramp of thousands of feet.’
As the armies line up into formation, Tolstroy turns to simile: ‘just as a sailor is always surrounded by the same decks, masts, and rigging of his ship, so the soldier always has around him the same comrades, the same ranks, the same sergeant major.’ Simile also evokes imagery: ‘Bushes looked like gigantic trees and level ground like cliffs and slopes.’ This conveys the heightening senses of the soldiers as battle is approaching.

Sound is used to introduce the actual fighting: ‘In front in the fog a shot was heard and then another, at first irregularly at varying intervals—trata... tat—and then more and more regularly and rapidly, and the action at the Goldbach Stream began.’

As the fighting continues, Tolstoy maintains his use of imagery: ‘Below, where the fight was beginning, there was still thick fog; on the higher ground it was clearing, but nothing could be seen of what was going on in front.’

Even when Napolean enters the scene, imagery is maintained: ‘Above him was a clear blue sky, and the sun's vast orb quivered like a huge hollow, crimson float on the surface of that milky sea of mist.’
Next, we have sight: ‘Napoleon with the naked eye could distinguish a mounted man from one on foot’;  ‘He gazed silently at the hills.’ And ‘his gleaming eyes were fixed intently on one spot.’
Then there is sound: ‘he listened to the sounds of firing in the valley’; and the ‘sound ‘of wheels and footsteps.’

Facial expression is used: ‘Not a single muscle of his face—which in those days was still thin—moved.’ And: ‘his cold face wore that special look of confident, self-complacent happiness.’

Then, more imagery: ‘bayonets glittering.’ Sight is combined with imagery: ‘He sat motionless, looking at the heights visible above the mist’ and ‘he looked now at the Pratzen Heights, now at the sun floating up out of the mist’ and the ‘fields and mist were aglow with dazzling light.’

As we turn to the Russian side, ‘the musketry fire of unseen forces could be heard (sound),’ then Tolstoy employs stream of consciousness to convey the bravado of Prince Andrew in the battle: ‘Standard in hand, I shall go forward and break whatever is in front of me.’

Then there is sight: ‘He could not look calmly at the standards of the passing battalions … he kept thinking, That may be the very standard with which I shall lead the army (stream of consciousness).’
Tolstoy conveys imagery and sound again: ‘the valleys lay like a milk-white sea.’ Then ‘came the sounds of firing’ and ‘guards were entering the misty region with a sound of hoofs and wheels and now and then a gleam of bayonets’

As the battle continues, there is more sound: ‘the firing became more distinct’; facial expression: ‘the expression on all [the generals’] faces suddenly changed to one of horror’ as the Russians see the French suddenly appear; and sight as Prince Andrew watches the battle with his ‘naked eye’ with ‘a cloud of smoke spread all round’ (imagery) and ‘firing heard quite close at hand.’

Then there is action as ‘confused and ever-increasing crowds [of Russians] were running back’ and ‘the soldiers started firing without orders’.  Then more facial expression: ‘General Bolkonski ‘looked around bewildered’; and detail: ‘blood was flowing from [General Kutuzov’s] cheek.’

There is simile as ‘bullets flew hissing across the regiment and across Kutuzov's suite like a flock of little birds.’

Action continues as Prince Andrew, with the standard ‘ran forward with full confidence that the whole battalion would follow him.’

Then there is facial expression: the ‘distraught yet angry expression on the faces of the soldiers.’
Finally there is stream of consciousness as Prince Andrew is hit by a bullet: "What's this? Am I falling? My legs are giving way,"

Without a doubt, imagery returns: ‘Above him there was now nothing but the sky—the lofty sky, not clear yet still immeasurably lofty, with gray clouds gliding slowly across it.’ And more stream of consciousness:  ‘How quiet, peaceful, and solemn; not at all as I ran, thought Prince Andrew … How was it I did not see that lofty sky before? And how happy I am to have found it at last! Yes! All is vanity, all falsehood, except that infinite sky. There is nothing, nothing, but that. But even it does not exist, there is nothing but quiet and peace. Thank God!...’


In conclusion, this essay has looked at the use of literary features in Tolstoy’s War and Peace to see how the effect of battle has been achieved. What stands out is that imagery is most popular, and the writer surprising only uses two senses: sight and sound. He uses simile a lot, but hardly any metaphor (except for that ‘milky sea of mist’ and one or two others). Also, stream of consciousness gives a spiritual element to the battles. I would say the literary devices Tolstoy uses in the battle scenes are relatively few – but the ones he chooses (like imagery, sound, sight, facial expression, and stream of consciousness) he uses extremely well – they carry the whole battle. He’s like a good tight-head prop in a rugby game, capable with the ball in hand if needed, but would rather stick to a few core duties and do them consistently well; unlike other literary stars like Conrad and Hemingway who are the flashy players out wide in the backline, usually brilliant, but who sometimes fumble the ball. At any rate, with the limited techniques that Tolstoy does employ, the two battles come alive, leaving a marked, almost terrifying, impression of warfare upon the reader.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Basic Plot Outline for Hollywood Screenplays

Almost without exception, Hollywood movies, from the latest Oscar best-picture winner to a children’s animation, follow, in some way, if not entirely, the same basic plot structure. Although these elements of plot are examined extensively by Martha Alderson in The Plot Whisperer (Adams Media, 2011), they appear to be universal, and it could be argued that they are evident in almost every story since ancient times to modern-day bestsellers.
Nonetheless, these plot features are not apparent to the casual movie-theatre audience because there are wild varieties involved. For example, the comfortable, Familiar World of the Protagonist might only be a few minutes for a horror/action flick like World War Z, but almost one hour for an epic fantasy like The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey where all the main characters, or hobbits, need to be introduced. Further, there are diverse ways of transporting the Protagonist from the old, Familiar World to the New World of suspense and danger: it can be by a tornado as in The Wizard of OZ, or by a transport boat carrying Tom Hanks’s character towards the hell of D-Day as in Saving Private Ryan. In addition, an energetic marker to draw the Protagonist away from the Familiar World might be a drastic event like the chest-burster scene in Alien or the slaughter of Luke Skywalkers’s adoptive family in Star Wars Episode Four; but could be something more subtle as in Neo’s choice between the red pill or the blue pill in The Matrix – that is really Neo’s choice to step away from his old, comfortable existence. A Crisis to bring about Transformation might be the death of a girlfriend in a hotel room as in The Ides of March, or an epic battle scene involving thousands as in Peter Jackson’s Tolkin movies. The Transformation itself (where the Protagonist learns about his or her faults and makes the choice to transform) might take place on a battlefield next to a bombed-out pillbox, with the Protagonist in tears, as in Saving Private Ryan, or in a dark cave with the Protagonist in deep thought as in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
I have made one change to Martha Alderson’s analysis of plot outline. Many films have a ‘hook’ at the beginning to draw viewers into the story, so I have included this energetic marker. Also, I have included a case study to further illustrate the basic plot structure.

Basic Plot outline for Hollywood Screenplays

The Beginning

An event, often a Prologue, to ‘hook’ the reader
Can be related to Theme
(NB: this 1st Energetic Marker seems optional; surprisingly, many Hollywood movies do not include it, and just start at the where and when of the Familiar World)

Familiar World
Where and when: immediate, wider, and universal settings conveyed
Convey comfortable, Familiar World of Protagonist
Introduce major characters plus their traits
Show Positive Traits of Protagonist, and hint at Negative Traits (that must be overcome): A)  Weakness  B) Fear  C) Hatred
Beginning Goal for Protagonist and, maybe, hint at Long-term Goal
Allude to Theme (usually in dialogue, details, action, observations, thought)
Can hint at Backstory of Protagonist
Usually there is Foreshadowing of danger to come
(NB: the time of the Beginning varies greatly from movie to movie; it can range anywhere from a few minutes for an action film to one hour for an epic.

An event that pulls the Protagonist away from his/her comfortable world, into a New World fraught with suspense, danger
The Protagonist steps through a metaphorical ‘Gateway’, or threshold, into the middle of the story, or New World
NB: The threshold can be guarded (if it is important to the story), or could be more like a Barrier; and it can convey fear; ie. the Protagonist is hesitant to cross this threshold because of fear

The Middle

New World
New setting, vastly different, more complex than the beginning (relies on details, including sensory, and particulars relating to Theme)
New ‘Middle’ Goal or the same goal from the beginning
Scenes/action moves Protagonist away from this goal
Scenes/action challenge Protagonist’s beliefs, self image; highlight traits, especially fear (of New World)
Protagonist learns new skills
Protagonist conveys new emotions (learns from mistakes of the past)

An event, or test, in the middle of the middle, that recommits the Protagonist to his/her goal
Challenges Protagonist’s determination to reach that goal
The more confident, less fearful Protagonist makes a pledge to recommit; restates goal
Forewarning of increasing danger
Increased danger
Reevaluation of situation
Protagonist’s negative traits are revealed (he/she blames others for these negative traits)
Protagonist becomes more conscious of emotions, thoughts; but confidence is shaken and he/she becomes more vulnerable

High point of dramatic action (that signifies the end of something, or a death);
Lowest point for Protagonist
Protagonist suffers
Negative traits of Protagonist exaggerated

Usually in a quiet, intimate place, the Protagonist is ‘stripped bare’, forced to reflect, look deep within him/herself, rethink life, and become conscious of negative traits (and acknowledges them as his/her own fault)
A new self is born, free of negative traits, with new belief system and, maybe, new positive traits which, all in all, severs the past (transformation)
Wisdom is obtained
Protagonist makes a new plan and new End Goal (or can keep the same goal as the Middle or Beginning Goal); however, the Protagonist must move forward
The Protagonist usually steps through a metaphorical ‘Gateway’, or threshold (that can be guarded or barricaded by forces to prevent the Protagonist from entering if he or she is not ready; and these forces usually want confirmation or proof of the Protagonist’s Transformation before he or she can enter)  
Backstory can be revealed


The Protagonist is stronger, more confident, and reaches the Climax without hesitation
Buildup to Climax: show Protagonist’s new self, new positive traits; Protagonist excited by new challenges; momentum builds swiftly
Climax itself: Protagonist faces the Climax and defeats Antagonist(s) with new skill, strength he or she didn’t have before
Ought to be related to Theme (that is, combination of action scenes and character development; or, in other words, what is the writer’s desire to write?)

Protagonist makes peace with the past and, often, returns to it
Can leave a question or two unanswered questions, or loose ends, so the story lives on in the reader/viewer
Protagonist conveys new personality, sense of freedom; has new status in the old world
Can hint at Theme


CASE SUDY: DRAG ME TO HELL (2009, Universal Pictures, directed by Sam Raimi

The Beginning
The first scene involves a family visiting a house: the floor opens, and the boy is dragged into Hell. The viewer is gripped, and, likewise, dragged into the story.

Familiar World
We are projected into the immediate, Familiar World of the Protagonist: a bank office in downtown L.A. Christina goes along the freeway to work every day, greets customers in the bank, does errands for her boss and makes coffee. Christina has a Beginning goal: she wants to be assistant manager.  
Negative traits are soon revealed: Christina’s gluttony is evident when she pauses at a cake-shop window; she is seen as weak and unconfident by her boss, and an unworthy little farm girl by her boyfriend’s mother.
A Forewarning of doom soon arrives when Christina refuses to help an old woman, Ganush, in the bank by repossessing her home.

The parking garage scene tears Christina away from her comfortable, Familiar World. She is attacked by Ganush, barely escapes with her life, and has a curse placed upon her.

The Middle
New World
Cursed, Christina is now projected into a New World fraught with danger and suspense. Christina struggles internally in this New World. She doubts herself and is haunted by fear.
The Theme of Fate is revealed when Christina and her boyfriend visit a fortune-teller. The Seer’s den is full of Hindu symbolism and mystical artefacts such as a shrunken monkey’s head. There is a debate between the Seer and Cristina’s boyfriend about Fraud and Carl Jung’s different interpretations of fate: Fraud relies on unconscious choices while Jung includes mystical factors and religion in his analysis.
Then Christina has a new Mid-range Goal: to rid herself of the ‘dark spirit’ curse.
Christina’s Backstory is soon revealed when she finds an old photo of herself: she used to be overweight as a child, as this has led to her inferiority trait now as an adult.
Further events reinforce the curse: Christina is attacked by a demon in her house, she has a nightmare, swallows a fly and so on. There is a further reference to the background story, as in: ‘You used to be a fat girl’.

Christina is attacked in her home again by the demon, this time more violently. Now she is desperate to rid the curse. She attempts, or recommits, to do this by sacrificing her cat.
Dinner at her boyfriend’s house highlight new positive traits for Christina such as ambition, backbone, and honesty.
Nonetheless, the curse continues, and this newly-found confidence is severely shaken. She reinstates her attention to the Seer to rid herself of the curse. Forewarning of increasing danger is apparent when the Seer tells her she has only one more day to do so before she is dragged into Hell. Danger is increased when the demon attacks her in the shed.
Christina’s gluttony trait is revealed when she indulges in eating ice cream (this is also a reference to her Backstory).

This is the séance scene where the demon and other souls enter the haunted house from the Prologue. We have glimpsed Christina’s need to change and her positive traits in previous scenes; now comes her test to see if she can become a better, stronger person. But the Crisis means just that: the séance fails to rid the demon and San Dena, the Seer who leads the séance, dies in the process. The Crisis also shows Christina as weak and ‘insignificant’ (all she wants to do is run from the demon): she has failed her test.

Transformation takes place in the coffee shop, which has an intimate, quiet setting. Christina’s new traits are revealed: she is strong, aggressive, and tough; and also compassionate because she refuses to pass on the curse to someone else. Christina has a new End Goal: to pass the curse onto someone who has already died.

Christina, more confident and stronger (as evident through tough-talking dialogue and action), races towards the Climax, or final confrontation with the demon.
The Climax itself is the graveyard scene, where Christina manages to bury the envelope (which contains the curse) in the grave of the deceased Ganush, although she struggles to do so in the mud and rain.

Having rid the curse, Christina is radiant, gleaming in sunshine, and dressed in pink. Her Beginning Goal has been achieved (she has won the Assistant Manager position). She returns to the old, Familiar World of downtown L.A. a distinctively changed person: confident, outgoing, and strong. She buys a new business coat which signifies her new status, and admits her earlier faults to her boyfriend in an effort to further cleanse herself. However, there is a loose end to the story because Christina realizes the curse has not gone away and she is, finally, dragged into Hell.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

The Animus in Kaliyuga: Age of Darkness

The animus is an archetype of the unconscious mind, coined by Carl Jung, whereby a male part of the self is inherent in a woman. The woman can either accept this masculine personality or fight against it (where it becomes a repressed Shadow); nonetheless, it is always there in the unconscious and the woman cannot avoid it.

Kaliyuga: Age of Darkness (unfinished manuscript by this writer) is an alien-horror story set in modern India where a demon race of shape-shifting extraterrestrials called the Bhuta want to take over the world by destroying humanity.

This essay will examine the animus in the female character Ratchia, a famous Bollywood actress.

First, Ratchia is haunted by the negative aspects of the masculine trait. The lust-filled, aggressive animus seems to be everywhere and she cannot avoid its impact on her psyche.

Take the scene where Suchin, her husband, first meets her in the coffee shop: ‘Ratchai staggered into the Sugar Cafe on Tata Road, Bollywood, aware of all the eyes that had been staring at her on the street. The café was crowded, mostly men, and there were more eyes, full of lust, penetrating.’

In the street scene, Ratchia witnesses a rape that could be a figment of her imagination: ‘Down an alleyway, there was a half-naked, bleeding woman with her clothes torn. She was bent over some steps and three men were surrounding her, their faces horrid, snarling.’

Then, later in the same scene, the animus continues to haunt Ratchia: ‘a scruffy man with greasy hair, stubble on his chin, and large groggy eyes was sitting on a stool, a carving knife swinging by his side. As he sneered at her, he raised the knife and drew it across his throat.’

This animus appears only to be happening in Ratchia’s mind. Her husband, Suchin, refers to the rape scene as illusionary when he says: ‘You’re imagining things.’

The battle with the animus appears to be with herself, not really with what is happening in the world around her, imaginary or not. This is alluded to in a conversation with Suchin in the coffee shop when Ratchia is talking about killing a male character in one of her movies. Suchin asks if she, the killer, hates the man and she replies, ‘No ... I think she hates herself.’ This is a clear indication that Rachia’s battle is with her psyche, not really with the world around her.

Further, in an attempt to block out the animus, Ratchia becomes stiff and cold, imprisoned in a shell. For instance: ‘She sat at a table and shuddered in her chair, looking straight ahead, her eyes distant and void.’

Signs of the animus perambulate around Ratchia. First, she sees a skull at the foot of her bed: the dark eye sockets staring at her, the mouth twisted and warped.’ Later, the skull returns just before her accident: ‘a shape began to form in front of her: a skull, glaring white.’ The skull is like a ghost, trapped between the physical and spiritual world, which is really a symbol of Ratchia herself, trapped between what is real and what isn’t.

Also, the sky around Ratchia is usually misty or grey, as in: 'Outside, it was a grey, overcast morning in Bombay’; ‘Clouds that covered the hills had crept into town and made the streets misty.’ And, just before her accident: ‘A green traffic light swam in the fog like a beacon in a storm of humanity, reaching out to her.’

Mist or fog signifies the unconscious mind. Grey symbolizes the unclear distinction between consciousness (white) and unconsciousness (black) which is a reflection of Rachia’s life: she is trapped between this ego and id.

Next, Ratchia is startled by a dog: ‘big bodied, big headed, stout neck, forelegs hunched and tense, its dark eyes concentrated.’ According to Carl Jung, animals are a symbol of our primitive nature, alluding to the unconscious – and this primitive nature, manifested in the animus, is haunting Ratchia.

Ratchia feels degraded and subdued by the animus. Therefore, she sympathizes with other subjugated people around her, like the two beggar children on the street: ‘Ratchia dropped money into their bowls’; and she is drawn towards the old man with leprosy preaching on the street corner. No wait – I want to listen to him,’ she says when Suchin tries to drag her away.

Later in the novel, Ratchia surrenders to the animus, or male personality within herself; but in so doing she goes overboard, and is possessed by the negative traits of the animus.

First, when she is filming her new movie, she surrenders to her sexual drive, flirting with the crew, even with the camera: ‘Make love to the camera,’ the director says, and, ‘Ratchia’s eyes flashed at the director and she imaged she was making love to him too.’ Then, during the next shoot: she turned and threw herself into the arms of the dancers [and] lets their hands caress her body.’

At the party scene, she becomes aggressive and even more promiscuous. Ratchia put her arm around [the director] and hugged him. He drew his small, robust body up against her own and kissed her on the neck. She let his sausage-like fingers play with her torso. She giggled, spilling her champagne on her dress.’  

During the sex scene with the director, Rachia starts to regret deeply this promiscuous behavior, the first stage in acceptance, and harmony, with the animus. She struggles with the director, rolls him over and pricks his neck with her fingernail, drawing ‘a speck of blood on his neck.’ It all could be a dream, or an imaginary scene, because Rachis feels blood on her own throat when she emerges from the party.

Later, in the taxi, Ratchia continues to regret her actions at the party: She thought about her behaviour at the studio party and her body curled up. Her skin crawled as if she were covered in worms.’

In summary, this essay has scrutinized the animus is the female character of Ratchia in Kaliyuga: Age of Darkness. First, we have seem how Ratchia is haunted by the aniumus. It is all around her, on every street corner, threatening her. Then we have seen how she surrenders to it, but in so doing she lets it override her ego until she surrenders to its negative traits. Finally, Ratchia regrets her aggressive and promiscuous behavior. This regret could, hopefully, lead to Ratchia’s recover of her true self and harmony with her male identity by the end of the novel.