Arundhati Roy and the politics of democracy


Remind me again — why do I find her shrill, scatter-shot denunciations so infuriating? One example of the many sweeping statements that rest not on fact but on the shaky foundation of her choler:

So, you know, you have a situation where more and more people are just outside the barcode. You know, they are what you would call “illegible.” And we have a very, very serious situation here, where now they are planning, you know, once again, to make a—what do you call it—a electronic ID card. Of course, once again, to people who don’t have water, who don’t have electricity, who don’t have schools, but they will have ID cards, and people who don’t have ID cards are not going to exist.

Ah well. My friend Amit Varma [Twitter, blog] recently pointed me at this 2002 article by writer/academic Ian Buruma — as measured a dissection as any you could wish for.


One thought on “Arundhati Roy and the politics of democracy

  1. In general, from whatever little I have read of her, I think the main ideas of her essays are definitely very relevant, though they sometimes tend to get lost somewhere in the manner of her writing them. But, definitely they are pertinent.

    She might be shrill, she might be scatter-shot, and many adjectives more, but whatever she is pointing our attention out to are important questions to ask.

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