A House for Mr Biswas

Tara Character Analysis

Tara is Bipti’s childless sister and Mr Biswas’s aunt. Tara marries the wealthy businessman Ajodha, becomes “a person of standing,” and rejects many of the orthodox Hindu practices the Tulsis (whom she dislikes) continue to follow. On account of Tara’s worldliness, Bipti sends Dehuti to work in Tara and Ajodha’s household to learn upper-class etiquette. Tara plays an important maternal role for Mr Biswas throughout his life, offering him guidance, comfort, and opportunity when nobody else can.

Tara Quotes in A House for Mr Biswas

The A House for Mr Biswas quotes below are all either spoken by Tara or refer to Tara. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of A House for Mr Biswas published in 2001.
Part 1, Chapter 5 Quotes

There was no need to ask where Jagdat was going. He was going to his family. He too, then, lived a divided life.

Related Characters: Mr Biswas, Tara, Ajodha, Jagdat, Rabidat
Related Symbols: Houses
Page Number: 241
Explanation and Analysis:
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Tara Character Timeline in A House for Mr Biswas

The timeline below shows where the character Tara appears in A House for Mr Biswas. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Part 1, Chapter 1: Pastoral
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Bipti began sending the villagers with messages, most importantly to her childless sister Tara, “a person of standing” who married a relatively well-off merchant. Clad in heavy gold and... (full context)
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...smelling and tasting raw flesh (even though he never tried meat) and began spitting furiously. Tara led the women in wailing for Bipti; because “cremation was forbidden,” Raghu lay in a... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Mr Biswas first saw the photograph in 1937, hung on the wall in Tara’s drawingroom amidst many other photos of funerals, friends, and landscapes. It was faded and punctuated... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Tara rightly anticipated that the photograph would be “a record of the family all together for... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
...and the land to Dhari” before moving with Mr Biswas to live with some of Tara’s relatives in Pagotes. Pratap and Prasad went to live with a distant relative and continue... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 2: Before the Tulsis
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
Tara took Bipti to the decrepit office of an uncouth solicitor named F.Z. Ghany, who handled... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...visited at Christmastime, and although Dehuti lived nearby, he almost never saw her, except when Tara’s husband “held a religious ceremony and needed Brahmins to feed.” He went over in a... (full context)
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Ajodha, Tara’s thin and cold husband, made Mr Biswas uncomfortable. Ajodha liked when others read to him... (full context)
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Bipti worried that none of her children had married, and Tara nevertheless decided to pull Mr Biswas out of school and make him into a pundit.... (full context)
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...irritated because she was forced to defend Dehuti, who eloped with the yard boy at Tara’s house. Upon visiting Tara’s house, Ajodha implored Mr Biswas to explain how he got himself... (full context)
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...day’s takings”; he was paranoid and quick to anger, accusing Mr Biswas of spying for Tara because he was stealing from her every night: after giving enough drunk patrons less than... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
...in a windowless room. Whenever the shop was closed, he would visit Bipti, Alec, or Tara, whose bookcase now had twenty volumes of The Book of Comprehensive Knowledge, mistakenly delivered by... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
One weekend, after one of Ajodha’s relatives died, Bhandat’s family went with Ajodha and Tara to the funeral, leaving Mr Biswas with a free weekend and Bhandat’s two rooms to... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...that Pundit Sitaram prophesied his failures. Mr Biswas implored his mother not to go see Tara but she did, and he told her all about Bhandat’s theft and mistress. Tara did... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
...He went home to inform Bipti that he would not take a job or see Tara, but planned to kill himself, and his mother heartily encouraged him: “That would be the... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...Biswas marched down the main road for miles, till he had long left town. Ramchand, Tara’s former yard boy and Dehuti’s husband, tapped him on the shoulder and greeted him amicably.... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...Dehuti had been broken. He resolved to stop looking for a job and just ask Tara. (full context)
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Soon, Mr Biswas returned to Tara’s house, but was disappointed to discover that one of Bhandat’s sons had taken over his... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 3: The Tulsis
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...stood in the way, and the stoic Mrs Tulsi, adorned in as much jewelry as Tara, came inside to speak with her. (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
After hiding at home for two days, Mr Biswas visited Tara’s house in search of emotional support and found Bhandat’s younger son (Rabidat) reading That Body... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Tara insisted on going to Hanuman House and soon returned with the news that he would... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Noticing his apprehension, Tara asked Mr Biswas whether he was “afraid of them already, like every other man in... (full context)
Part 1, Chapter 5: Green Vale
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...drinking and the unfortunate eventual beating of wives. Mr Biswas went to visit Bipti and Tara, then on Boxing-day, his brothers Pratap and Prasad who “had married nondescript women from nondescript... (full context)
Education, Work, and Language Theme Icon
Tara’s yard looked the same as ever, and although Ajodha was definitely busy milking the cows... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Sitting on the verandah, Tara asked Mr Biswas to stay around for dinner and to talk about his children, and... (full context)
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...Just like that, “Mr Biswas realized that the time to ask had gone for good.” Tara and Ajodha asked him about the house’s construction and continued to berate Rabidat, who began... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Tara and Ajodha continued asking Mr Biswas about the house, but Bhandat’s older son, Jagdat, soon... (full context)
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
...tapped him on the shoulder and offered him a cigarette—nobody was allowed to smoke at Tara and Ajodha’s house—and explained that he and Ajodha both knew that Mr Biswas had come... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 2: The New Régime
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
Colonialism, Oppression, and Escape Theme Icon
Mr Biswas started taking the kids to Tara and Ajodha’s beautiful new house, but they returned weekend after weekend to their dull and... (full context)
Part 2, Chapter 6: The Revolution
Independence vs. Belonging Theme Icon
Social Status and Hierarchy Theme Icon
Gender and Family Theme Icon
...courage to go back yet found the energy to go ahead.” He decided to visit Tara and Ajodha; his aunt was excited for him to finally leave the Tulsis, and his... (full context)