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Is there a theme of rich vs poor in this book?

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dfwheels87 | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 15, 2013 at 2:12 AM via web

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Is there a theme of rich vs poor in this book?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 15, 2013 at 12:07 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that one can see how the theme of rich vs. poor is evident in Boo's work.  The fact that the slum is set next to the airport is one way in which setting helps to enhance the theme of rich vs. poor.  The airport is representative of the very essence of globalization's promises.  The Mumbai airport has almost every essential to the modern traveller, appealing to a particular brand of wealth and embodying the very best in travel amenities.  Its sprawl and expansive nature crowds out and pushes against the slum of Annawadi, a condition of being where poverty is redefined and individual suffering goes unnoticed in the sprawl of wealth.  This is something that is seen consistently in terms of how society is organized.  The individuals who are economically disadvantaged are denied voice constantly by the social and political institutions that are supposed to watch out for them.  The legal system and the entire economic condition of "globalization" are supposed to ensure that an equal playing field is evident.  This is challenged with Boo's work in which individuals who are poor must struggle against overwhelming and brutal conditions to have their voice heard.  It is in this dynamic that one can see the theme of rich versus poor clearly evident in the narrative's unfolding.

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