Analysis on “A Horse and Two Goats”

R.K. Narayan’s story entitled “A Horse and Two Goats” is a story of innocence and poverty. The narrator of the story illustrated how the main character was pushed into terrible situations due to poverty.

Narayan discussed in his story the culture of India as it portrays some of the important traditions that exist within the whole country. It is a depiction of social construction that emerged through the issue of poverty and cultural differences.

In the beginning of the story, the narrator illustrated the simple life of the main character and its wife. The couple is rich during their younger days together but as they grow old, all their richness slowly decreased until the time when only 2 of their 40 goats and sheep remain. It shows how poverty in India develops as its people grows old, which is different from other countries that older people are richer that younger people because they already established their lifestyle.

In the latter part of the story, humorous attack emerged and developed as the author’s way of resolving the conflict of the protagonist. Based on my reading of the story, I have seen that the resolution caused another problem for the couple. It means that it is not a permanent but temporary resolution. It was depicted the humor of the author as he unravel the resolution of the conflict.

Another thing is that the conflict lies within the middle part of the story and not in the beginning, which is somehow illogical in the field of literature. That is why confusion started to exists. However, I can see that the author imposed the conflict in the middle part of the story because he wanted to discuss the culture and tradition of India.

Nevertheless, it can be seen that the author could not able to incorporate the things that he wanted to justify in the beginning of the story to the main conflict in order to make the audience hang from the beginning up to the end.


Narayan, R.K. A Horse and Two Goats. 273-290