Study Guide

Midnight's Children Truth

By Salman Rushdie


Truth in Midnight's Children is not the truth that you're thinking about. It's not the sort of thing they're asking you for when you stand up in front of a judge with your hand swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. If Saleem ever tried that, we are pretty sure he'd end up in jail. Truth in this novel is more about feeling, about memories, about what should be right even if it's not. That might not stand up in court, but it sure is an interesting way of viewing the world.

Questions About Truth

  1. If truth is more elastic in Midnight's Children than it is when a dictionary defines it, is deception looser too? Does it matter?
  2. What are the standards that the characters in the novel measure truth by?
  3. Why do you think Rushdie decides not to use the traditional definition of the word truth in this novel? What impact does it have on the story?

Chew on This

It doesn't really matter what's true and what's not in Midnight's Children.

Truth does exist in Midnight's Children, but it's not based on facts, it's based on feelings.