Red Sari

This study guide will help you analyse the text “Red Sari” by Amanthi Harris. We will show you examples of elements in the text that will be relevant for your analysis.

Presentation of the text

Title: “Red Sari”
Author: Amanthi Harris
Published in: KIN: New Fiction by Black and Asian Women
Date of Publication: 2004
Genre: Short story

Amanthi Harris is a Sri Lanka-born author who lives in the United Kingdom.  She writes novels and short stories and is involved in local projects in the UK encouraging creativity in communities. Her novella, Lantern Evening won the Gatehouse Press New Fiction Prize in 2016.

The short story "Red Sari" was originally published in the collection KIN: New Fiction by Black and Asian Women.


Below, you can read an excerpt from our study guide:


The title of the story, “Red Sari” hints that the plot might feature Asian characters and that it might revolve around traditional clothing. Reading the story, we find out that the characters are living abroad but are originally from Sri Lanka. The title refers to the sari the main character buys to please her mother who wanted her to wear a traditional sari at her wedding: “…the sari unfolded – red and orange with gold borders – and cascaded a rich curtain around me. I emerged glowing red and gold and different now…” 

The daughter buys the sari not as a wedding dress but as a going away dress after the wedding. The fact that it is red, rather than white and gold like a traditional wedding dress or sari, suggests that the woman wants to be unconventional and to reject the cultural implications of a wedding sari.

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Red Sari

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