Reading #10: The Ladies Have Feelings, So … Shall We Leave it to the Experts?
India is a complex country that appears to be improving in some aspects but then getting worse
in others. One quotation really sets up what Roy means by this constant tug of war between
improvements and deterioration,
“It's as though the people of India have been rounded up and loaded on to two convoys of trucks (a huge
big one and a tiny little one) that have set off resolutely in opposite directions. The tiny convoy is on its
way to a glittering destination somewhere near the top of the world. The other convoy just melts into
the darkness and disappears”.
Determination of which convoy one is in is determined by, class, caste, and religion. The elite
few are headed to improving their relatively already good fortunes, while the majority lower classes and
castes move in the opposite direction. Already in the first couple paragraphs the issue of such a large
The article is briefly focuses on writing. What it means to be a writer and how to be a good
writer/artist. Roy begins by confessing that there is a large illiterate population of the country before
continuing to answer the questions on what it means and how to be a good writer. She establishes that
there are no rules on how one should write. Thus accordingly a writer may choose not to write morally
or responsibly (Roy acknowledges that abuse of this power results in bad art). Writers and artists are
freer than they have ever been in today’s world. But how free are they? In India there has been a long
search for the next great writer to be published. But to be published it has to sell. So Roy brings up a
very important question: If what you write doesn’t sell and instead write about what does, is this truly
freedom of speech? The effects of Globalization rear its ugly head, again.
A common theme in many of my classes related to the ‘developing world’ is the effect of
globalization, neoliberal policies, and structural adjustment programs. In this reading we are provided
the details about how India was forced to import food even though there was already more food in the
country than it could handle. The result is increased prices resulting in starvation in the poor resul