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India and China are poised to take over the world and the fictional Balram Halwai is leading the charge. Balram is a newly 'minted' entrepreneur who has risen through the social and economic ranks of India’s rigid caste system to become the owner and boss of his own taxi company. He is a prime example of India’s new middle class. The satiric narrative of how he achieved his success is told in seven installments to the Premier of China, Wen Jiabao, who is due to make a state visit to India. Balram shares his story with the premier and, in doing so, points out the flaws and problems that face India currently and in the future. In this darkly humorous first novel, Aravind Adiga, the recipient of the 2008 Man-Booker Prize, warns India to be careful. Global technology and the explosion of call-centers have created a slippery path. While some parts of India are growing richer, other parts are sinking equally in the other direction. Adiga explores the viability and strength of India’s future.
Bookclub-in-a-Box considers the following things:
- How Adiga uses Balram’s single voice in an imaginary dialogue with a world leader to show the meaning of a true 'entrepreneur.'
- The extraordinary symbolism of the white tiger, the chandelier, and the number four.
- The relationship between Balram and his boss juxtaposed with India’s changing caste boundaries to show the shift from old to new India.
- The morality of Balram’s actions according to Balram and as perceived by the reader.
Every Bookclub-in-a-Box PDF discussion guide includes complete coverage of the themes and symbols, writing style and interesting background information on the novel and the author.
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