Decolonial and EcoGothic Tropes in Deepa Anappara’s Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line




decolonial ecoGothic, South Asian Gothic, Indian slums, Deepa Anappara, precarity and violence, ecocriticism, postcolonial


This paper analyzes Deepa Anappara’s novel Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line (2020) from a decolonial ecoGothic perspective to show how the novel exposes the human and ecological crises in an urban slum known as a “basti” in an unnamed part of present-day India. The paper argues that Anappara uses the child narrator Jai and the gothic tropes of “Bhoot,” “Djinn,” and “smog” to convey the violent and traumatic experiences of marginalized communities residing in the slum. The novel uncovers child kidnappings, murders, and toxic waste dumps. This paper explores how Anappara employs the imagery of South Asian Gothic tropes as devices to create a postcolonial urban ecoGothic highlighting the ecological and climatic crises that arise out of the gentrification of the city and the growing divide between the slum dwellers and the privileged inhabitants of high-rise gated communities. Finally, the paper posits that Anappara’s decolonial ecoGothic creates a vision of the city as a site of trauma, violence, corruption, and environmental degradation within a neocolonial capitalist regime.

Author Biographies

Sanghamitra Devi, Tezpur University, India

Sanghamitra Devi is a PhD Research Scholar at the Department of English in Tezpur University, Assam. She completed her Masters in English from Gauhati University, Assam in 2018 with specialization in Literary Theory. She has one-year experience of teaching English Literature to graduate students in Biswanath College, Assam. She has qualified UGC-NET in 2019. Her research topic is EcoGothic in South Asian literature. Other areas of research interest include Eco Critical Studies, Post-colonial Studies, Indian Literature, and Gender Studies.

Esther Daimari, Tezpur University, India

Esther Daimari is an Assistant Professor (PhD) in the Department of English, Tezpur University, Assam. Her research interests include Landscape and Literature, Ecofeminism, and Ecocriticism. She has published research articles in journals such as South Asian ReviewSoutheast Asian Review of EnglishJournal of the School of Language, Literature and Cultural StudiesDibrugarh University Journal of English Studies, and Muse India. 


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How to Cite

Devi, S., & Daimari, E. (2023). Decolonial and EcoGothic Tropes in Deepa Anappara’s Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line. ETropic: Electronic Journal of Studies in the Tropics, 22(2), 148–169.