Behind the Beautiful Forevers

by Katherine Boo

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What are some examples of globalization in the book Behind the Beautiful Forevers?

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A great example of globalization comes from the book's title. The Annawadi slum and all its chronic social problems are hidden behind a concrete wall adorned with adverts for ceramic tiles—which, the advertising blurb claims, will stay "beautiful forever."

This is a metaphor for how India in the era of globalization presents itself to the world. On the surface, the Indian economy is growing rapidly, creating a prosperous, rising middle-class. However, beneath that glittering facade—the facade that the Indian government presents to international companies and investors—widespread poverty still remains, preventing tens of millions of people from getting a share of the country's growing wealth.

With this reading, globalization does little more than put a bright, shiny gloss on seemingly intractable social problems such as crime, poverty, and lack of access to education, many of which are exacerbated by globalization itself.

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