Untouchable

“The blood in Bakha’s veins tingled with the heat as he stood before t. His dark face, round and solid and exquisitely well defined, lit with a queer sort of beauty. The toil of the body had built up for him a very fine physique. It seemed to suit him, to give a homogeneity, a wonderful wholeness to his body, so that you could turn round and say: ‘Here is a man.’ And it seemed to give him a nobility, strangely in contrast with his filthy profession and with the sub-human status to which he was condemned from birth.

This was a long task, lasting almost twenty minutes. Bakha, however, did not seem to feel the strain of it as he had felt that strain of his earlier occupation. The burning flame seemed to ally itself with him. It seemed to given him a sense of power, the power to destroy. It seemed to infuse into him a masterful instinct somewhat akin to sacrifice. It seemed as if burning or extraction was for him a form of physical culture.”

Mulk Raj Anand, Untouchable,  (London: Penguin Classics 2014), 46.

In his head, Bakha has a burning desire (literally) to destroy the caste system. He feels more superior than he knows he should, and the limitations placed on him because of his social position are not suitable to the Engish-like/higher class life he wants to lead.