The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

The White TigerThe White Tiger completes the trilogy of countries about  which we have been given an insight through our book selections. China, Japan and now India. I previously  only had the vaguest idea of what a flawed democracy was in fact the government of India. The creative vehicle of a letter to the Prime Minister of China from Baltram – humble servant driver and now entrepreneur worked very well. He was likable and seemed to be like a real person which made the circumstances he described and his actions seem very plausible. The book also clearly raised the question of whether democracy which allows corruption and basically slavery is any way a worthy form of government. Perhaps the reason that the author had chosen to have his character write to the Premier of China was because he wanted to raise the question of whether a democracy which permits such behavior as described in the book is better than a non democratic form of government such as that of China which through the governments efforts are raising the standard of living of it’s people in an organized manner. Of course in order to consider this book a reflection of the actual circumstances in India and events that while fictional, could have very well happened, as compared to a completely fanciful novel one would have to consider the credentials of the author. As stated in the book , he was born in India in 1974, attended Columbia and Oxford, was a correspondent for Time and currently lives in Mumbai India which seems to make him legit. Just the other day I cut out an article from the LA times titled “ Corruption scandal rocks India which had statements such as widespread and corrosive corruption …scandal with government official involving billions of dollars  estimates that government lost 38 billion dollars equivalent of the  defense budget or enough to  feed 10% of it’s poorest populations for a year etc. This book  also raised at least  two moral questions- is murder ever justified especially when his victim was willing to sacrifice Baltram the killer when his wife ran over a child? The other questions which Balram never really deals with is how could he let his whole family be wiped out without even trying to warn them? There is also the Rooster Coop issue. How can one stand by and not escape or attack your captor when you see them one by one destroyed by the people who have locked you into this situation?

Category: FH - Fiction Historical | Tags: , , Comment »

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