Intergenerational family saga. Where do I start? There are so many stories that come to mind. The most recent one I read is Difficult Daughters. This book might not actually qualify fully in this category as it concentrates mainly on the lives of women but it chronicles the lives of three generations of mothers and daughters and their trials and tribulations in life. It creates a complex world that is set in pre independence india and raises the ordinary existence of woen and gives it and extra ordinary edge.
One of the great functions of art is to help us imagine what it is like to be not ourselves, what it is like to be someone or something else, what it is like to live in another skin, what it is like to live in another body, and in that sense to surpass ourselves, to go out beyond ourselves.
The next one I want to mention is oneof the longest piece of fictions I have read. It is called A suitable Boy by the famous author Vikram Seth. The family setting in this book is huge, a typical Indian joint family. There are also other standalone characters but the story doesn't stray far from the two main families joined at the hip through matrimony. Again this book is set in historical times just post the independence of India. There is an interesting political dackdrop to the story that mainly is about unaccepted love and the arranged marriage situation so famously Indian in all matters. The characters have a charm that draws you in and the story feels like a rug so intricately woven together.
I have also had the pleasure to read The Godfather which again is a fantastic family saga. More closer to home I have to say the TV production by Ekta Kapoor Kyuki saas bhi khabi bahoo thi(Becasue the mother in law was once a new bride - cliche that forms the crux of many relationships in the family lives of India couples) wins hands down in any competition of family sagas. The characters were very popular and the issues handled were very believable in real life.