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Discuss The Way Adige Has Utilized Literary Techniques To Position His Audience To Respond To Balram In This Way.”

1629 words - 7 pages

Aravind Adiga’s novel, The White Tiger, discusses the life of entrepreneurial India, Balram. Moving from a weak frightened boy living in what he calls the ‘darkness’, a place of poverty and cruel leaders, he moves up the social hierarchy to the point were he becomes a CEO of a large business corporation. In a letter format to a Chinese minister he conveys his personal thoughts on India’s corruption, the difficulty of social mobility and the change in his own person identity during his life. The readers of this text are forced to form an emotional bond with the protagonist and empathises with him to the extent that a friendship is formed between the two. This bond is achieved through many ...view middle of the document...

His honesty is also extremely evident throughout the text and he keeps no secrets from the reader. A clear example of this is when he reveals his murder of Mr Ashok within the first chapter, saying “I slit his throat”. While this is a shocking fact and breaks much of the connection that has been built between Balram and the reader however it gets it out of the way early and allows a relationship to reform over the proceeding chapters. The reader also has to admire Balram’s honesty for not trying to conceal this from the reader and this builds a great trust between the two people. This is unlike many novel of this type as they often leave the killing to the last chapter, in order to shock the audience. Adiga has specifically used this structural technique in order to build a greater bond between reader and Balram and repeatedly uses dialogue and self-reasoning to justify this murder. The effect of this is that when the murder actually takes place the reader is mentally prepared for it and even understanding. The first-person narrative style of this text allows Adiga to effectively convey concepts of symbolism and metaphors and effectively elaborate on them. An example of a metaphor used within the novel is the Rooster Coop. Believing that we are “all in the rooster coop” Adiga, through Balram, discusses how the lower classes of India cannot escape from their cage. He then goes on to state how chickens would never be able to escape from such as cage, that it “would require a white tiger”. This helps him justify to himself and the reader the murder he will commit and forces to the reader to sympathise with this choice. This point is again symbolised when Balram goes to the zoo as sees a white tiger in a cage. Associating himself as a White Tiger as well as being able to recognise the cage he is within. This scene symbolises his life, again helping him to depict the world around him and re-enforces the need for him to escape the world he lives in. Once more this justifies the murder, both causing the reader to sympathises and be more accepting of his character flaws. First person monologue has been used by Adiga within the text as it creates a personal and intimate connection between Balram and the reader in addition to allowing Adiga the chance to develop Balram’s character and justifying his decisions.

The text’s plot is crucial to the development of Balram’s character and forming this tight emotional bond. All through the text there are events which help to define Balram’s identity and how the reader views his character. A key example of this is the climbing of the Red Fort. All his childhood Balram has been forced to stay away from the fort, partly because of his fear and partly because of family restrictions. While returning to his home town, Laxmangarh, with Mr Ashok he climbs to the red fort. Climbing the fort symbolises his growing defiance against all his previous suppressive forces and helps to demonstrate his growth in character...

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