An Obedient Father

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An Obedient Father is a novel by Akhil Sharma. It received the 2001 Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award[1] and Whiting Writers' Award. Set during the assassination of Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, the story is about a corrupt and loathsome bag man who lives with his daughter and granddaughter in a New Delhi slum. The novel started as a short story that was previously published.

In his interview for the Paris Review's My First Time (film series), Sharma described creating his main character as "looking for someone who was guilty appropriately... There's that Henry James quote that 'it doesn't matter if a character is good or bad, it matters if the character is interesting.' So that's how I began to figure how to write about someone like (the main character)."[2]


  1. ^ List of Hemingway/PEN winners, accessed 5 Aug 2010.
  2. ^ [1]