Sandra Rodgers is an East Indian whose great-grandfather, a Scotsman, married an Indian woman when he was stationed in India. Rodgers, who grew up in England, arrived in Los Angeles in 1986 only to "flee" in 1989 to the Bay Area, where she currently resides. In 1993, while she was laying the groundwork for a novel loosely based on her family's move from India to England in the 1950s, Rodgers spent three months in India and England. Her experience in India motivated her to return to work on a more "Indian" enterprise. She will return to India in 1996 to initiate an in-country project based on the communities of street children in Bombay. In the meantime, Rodgers is completing an MFA in creative writing at San Francisco State University.
Sandra Rodgers's dramas encompass a diversity of styles. Her play Owning Half the Dog is a poetic, imagistic narrative of forgiveness and acceptance. Nella, an Asian American woman in her forties, gymnastically employs a balancing beam to physicalize her struggle to free herself from her family. Nella is poised between an emerging relationship with Samuel, an American, and her Asian family's stifling codependency. Her father, Manirung, her mother, Sarasvati, and her brother, Massulah, are emotionally bound to each other through dependence and guilt, a concept Rodgers concretizes by showing them entangled in a knitted web that keeps growing as Sarasvati endlessly knits. Nella's intimacy with Samuel is challenged as she attempts to work through some childhood "sexual transgression with the father that crossed the line where love becomes too much" and which still scars her sexual psyche. Although Massulah