Satire in The Satanic Verses
in Salman Rushdie
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This chapter discusses the novel The Satanic Verses. Like Midnight's Children and Shame before it, The Satanic Verses is a strongly satirical text that takes, as one of its dominant socio-political agendas, the condemnation of the abuse of power and authority. Unlike the two earlier novels, however, The Verses shifts its attention away from the abuses committed by South Asian political leaders towards the abuses that flourished under Margaret Thatcher's Prime Ministerial watch in 1980s Britain. Specifically, the novel, in its dominant narrative line, sets out to explore (or expose) the impact upon Britain's minority communities of lingering Falklands-era jingoism, and of systematic, institutionalised racism in organisations such as the police force and the media.

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