Department of Cultural Affairs, Government of Kerala

Khasakinte Ithihasam

A legendary novel from the legendary writer, O.V. Vijayan. Vijayan won the hearts of Malayalis with his debut novel Khasakinte Ithihasam (The Legends of Khasak) which is even now considered as one of the most celebrated and much-acclaimed novel ever written in Malayalam literature.

The novel pictures the journey of Ravi’s life - the main protagonist - that finally ends in Khasak, a sleepy hamlet in Palakkad district where his actual life begins. Ravi is introduced as a tormented guilt filled soul who leaves all his education and career half way. At Khasak he starts a single-teacher school.  

The novel that lacks a single storyline is actually a travel through the life and soul of Khasak as Ravi gets to know the people there. Filled with the aroma of village life, Khasak’s flavour is as delicious as the spicy native cuisine. A multitude of characters fills the novel with each depicting exclusive traits and mannerisms.

Appukkili, the village idiot is a noted character in the novel besides the Allappicha Mollakka, the toddy tapper Kuppu Achan, Madhavan Nair, Maimoona, Khaliyar, Aliyar and so forth. The author links every character with the myths, superstitions, local legends and mysteries of Khasak.

Khasak is showcased as a village with scores of shrines and Gods with Muslims and Hindus and some communists. Vijayan has displayed the life of this village in the most ordinary and normal fashion.  Birth, death, poverty, cruelty all took the regular road to reach Khasak.  The novel ends with Ravi’s death from a snake-bite while waiting for a bus at Koomankavu. 

Cultural News