Friday, August 24, 2012

ReView of The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga, Witty Satire on Injustice & Corruption

ReView of The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga
Indian Literature ; (276 pgs)
Free Press Publishing

The White Tiger Summary:
(Courtesy of GoodReads)
"Set in a raw and unromanticized India, The White Tiger -- the first-person confession of a murderer -- is as compelling for its subject matter as it is for the voice of its narrator: amoral, cynical, unrepentant, yet deeply endearing."

As a matter of fact, it is endearing amidst the fact that it is seriously amoral and cynical above all else.  There is a cringe element to the novel, and yet there is a lay-back-and-enjoy-the-ride-laughing feel to the book, as well.  It's definitely a clever satire of India's society from the point of view of a murderer and 'half-baked' Indian.  Even so, it is still pleasantly entertaining and unexpectedly enlightening.
This is how you'll bounce back and forth between the two extremes of liking it and not liking, through the entire novel.  This is the beautify of the novel, perhaps, because it is this way that you get to experience all the perspective Adiga has to offer of India.

The New York Times review of The White Tiger describes the book so beautifully in its introductory paragraph.  It's verbatim what the chunk of the novel is.  

"In a country inebriated by its new found economic prowess, he is a successful entrepreneur, a self-made man who has risen on the back of India's much-vaunted technology industry." 

Basicly, the novels describes and emphasizes the distance and disparities between the wealthy and the poor majority, in a white tiger economy, a place where the basic needs of the individuals are jeopardized consistently by the wealthy

The whole story is written as a grim tale of Indian with a sarcastic and satire tone.  I would say there is a lot of controversy to this topic, but then, it is a satire after all.  We must be able to distinguish between fact and fiction, draw a line between reality and man-made worlds. I would say if there was a motivation to read this book, it would be to learn about the world Adiga creates in the novel and put it side-by-side to what you know of India or what you come to know about it.

This book will really open your eyes to India.  That's what this book for me was.  I knew very little of India when I read it.  I knew a little bit more after I read it.  And then I knew much more when I did some digging around about the novel and what people thought about Adiga's perspective point of view on India.

It's definitely a topic I will come back later on to discuss on the blog.  Meanwhile, if you'd like to see a discussion that further touches on this subject, visit the GoodReads book club I host: Global Book Selections: The White Tiger General Discussion and Offensive Portrayal of Indian Culture

All in all a really great book to read if you haven't read anything from India.

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