India in “Power Politics” Book by Roy Arundhati Essay
The introductory section of this book already caught my attention. It made me see India from the different perspective and I arrived at understand that you can find external along with internal forces that made India stay poor and modern at the same time. This book gave me deep insight into a system that allows rich people to become even more prosperous while preventing poor people from improving the quality of their lives.
By using India as her example, Arundhati Roy was able to show how modernization and globalization have strongly affected millions of people in this country. One of the central arguments that the author makes is that the forces of globalization have made India financially dependent on Western economies and that this dependence gives many loopholes for the exploitation of these people.
In Roy’s view, the situation is aggravated even more by the fact that India is still struggling with its colonial legacy, particularly caste politics that may “tear the society apart” (Roy, p 13). Overall, this book can increase the readers’ awareness of the political, social, and cultural life of India.
The Metaphor of Rumpelstiltskin
Arundhati Roy alludes to such mythical character as Rumpelstiltskin to better describe the relations between India and foreign economies. Rumpelstiltskin can spin straw into gold, in other words, to assist the country in every possible way, but his assistance is unselfish, and someone will eventually have to pay the debt. The author argues that it is the poorest people of India, who will do that rather than politicians, who made these debts.
The writer believes that modern Rumpelstiltskin should not be viewed as a separate individual; more likely, this creature has “metamorphosed into an accretion, a cabal, an assemblage, a malevolent, incorporeal, transnational multi-gnome” (Roy 35). Immediately what comes to mind is a powerful government with global power and multi-national companies. This is because corrupt politicians and the negative influence of multinational corporations and foreign governments are threatening to weaken the nation and its people. Roy believes that India continues to pay the debts to this corporate Rumpelstiltskin.
To prove her point of view, Roy refers to the fact that the essential Indian infrastructure (including dams, water distribution system, power plants) belongs to foreign companies (Roy 45). This is the reason why such a mythical figure as Rumpelstiltskin is so important for the development of the writer’s arguments. Nonetheless, one should note that Arundhati Roy does not propose any solution to this problem and does not show how India can escape this Rumpelstiltskin.
Arundhati Roy wrote a compelling book because she did not restrain the force of her criticism and expressed what she felt for her nation and the modern world. She is one of those people, who are not afraid to speak her mind. As a result of reading this book, I am now aware of the problems that privatization brings especially when it comes to creating projects like big dams. This book throws light on the problems, faced by not only India but other developing countries as well because globalization failed to improve the quality of many people’s life. This work enables us to raised understand the relations between your advanced economies and the ones counties that have often been called “the 3rd world”.
Among the key problems, which she reveals is that lots of people, surviving in these countries fall victim to the neighborhood and corrupt politicians, on the main one hand, and foreign companies, on another. More importantly, oftentimes, they have without any possibility to change the status quo. Overall, Arundhati Roy’s book could be of great interest to the students of political science also to people who study the consequences of globalization.
Roy, Arundhati. Power Politics. 2 nd ed. MA: South End Press, 2001.