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Behind the Beautiful Forevers
Transcript of Behind the Beautiful Forevers
Main idea #2
Katherine Boo's purpose was to expose and bring light to the hardships of the poverty and corruption within our world such as in Mumbai.
main idea #1
by: Katherine Boo
Emmanuel Gutierrez period 6
Behind the Beautiful Forevers
takes setting in Annawadi, a gathering of slums near the Mumbai International Airport in India. Where families are amongst poor living conditions and daily obstacles to better themselves for a better economic life. In the slums (squatters on airport territory), the main mindset is to earn money to leave the current conditions for a better life. Separating the city and the slums is a sign reading "Beautiful Forever...Beautiful Forever". Behind these signs in Annawadi, is Abdul Husain, where we can learn about his struggle in the slum, as well as the interaction between him and other Annawadians, and eventually gain account of life from another point of view.
How it should be received by the audience
The presence of corruption in the Annawadi slums, translates our society today where it is virtually everywhere.
"Then the doctor entered the room with the results of the forensic investigation. Abdul was seventeen years old if he paid two thousand rupees, and twenty years if he did not." (Boo 129)
"Now that she (Asha) had the Corporator's Ear, she could fix more such problems, on commission. And when she had real control over the slum, she could create problems in order to fix them-a profitable sequence she'd learned by studying the Corporator." (Boo 20)
Annawadians were among the millions of the poor in India where they sorting trash, stealing, etc. were ways of advancing. However, to the "poor" in India, the slums were actually among the 'wealthier' in poverty where they showed examples of capitalism. The author attempts to expose the poverty in India through the accounts in the novel.
"True, only six of the slum's three thousand residents had permanent jobs. (The rest, like 85 percent of Indian workers, were part of the informal, unorganized economy.)" (Boo 6)
Main idea #3
A family in the slums of Annawadi was key to survival where each member put forth an economic effort as well as social effort, like in the family of the Husains, who were considered one of the most 'successful' in the slums.
"Others resented his family for the modern reason, economic envy. Doing waste work that many Indians found contemptible, Abdul lifted his large family above subsistence." (Boo x)
The author is credible as she actually visited Annawadi and documented, witnessed the life in the slums with video/tape recording, personal statements, and actual documents of the Annawadians.
Through this book she has won the Pullitzer Prize (2000) and the National Book Award. (2012)
The real life accounts, the diction, and the experiences among the Annawadians, have grabbed my attention immensely. As the book is an eye opener to the other side of the world where there is real poverty, real struggles, and real emotion. In our country, there are people in a house under the poverty line, which is vastly better than the poverty line in Mumbai. I have gained a sympathetic connection with the Husain family who not only struggles with the economy, but also socially. In overall, the literary work by Katherine Boo has kept me intrigued throughout the whole book where I have learned new information and became aware of a whole new life with a turn of a page.
The author had traveled to India for the research of domesticity among the people in Mumbai where she met her current Husband, and began to notice more and more disappointing sights. There she began her research poverty, where it had led her to Annawadi.
third person omniscent view
in order to properly explain the lives that each of the Annawadians lived. However through this point of view, she had realized the true struggle of the slums and how they dealt with everyday obstacles. In addition, Katherine Boo uses
throughout the book however, specifically in "True, only six of the slum's three thousand residents had permanent jobs. (The rest, like 85 percent of Indian workers, were part of the informal, unorganized economy.)" (Boo 6) In order to prove the struggle of the slums economically.
She had witnessed throughout several years in the life of Abdul and his neighbors, she had begun to create a sense of concern and sympathy. She provides
by displaying how mothers would kill there children if they proved to be a financial hardship or family members sticking up for each other.
"I'd rather be beaten than see them beat you," Abdul said to his father who said the same back to him when they were handcuffed together on the floor one sleepless night." (Boo 107)
" After the little girl caught TB (Medina), Fatima had become obsessed with catching the disease herself. Then Medina had drowned in a pail." (Boo 76)
"It was about as hopeful a season as there had been in the years since a sitty blum popped up in a big city of a country that holds 1/3 of the planets poor." (Boo 1)
The audience receiving the author's purpose would be the general public unaware of the real hardships of poverty, governments in our society, and people of India.
The audience should not necessarily receive the purpose as a call to action, but rather reflect of the conscience and realize what is going on in other parts of the world, however the governments of our society should see that there is corruption and it should be someway stopped regardless of it being explicitly stated.
"The Husains would spend some of their savings to make a decent home. " (Boo 83)
"Home [might be] a divider made of made of aluminum [with] a wall of reject bricks, which established [the] home as the sturdiest dwelling in the row. [Some] Neighbors' huts [were] held together by duct tape and rope . . . Annawadi itself was nothing special, in the context of the slums of Mumbai. Every house was off-kilter, so less off-kilter looked like straight. Sewage and sickness looked like life.”
JJS/Gender, Lang. Culture
Within the content of the book, the reader can make outside connections to a couple of topics discussed in the ERWC classroom such as the Juvenile Justice System and Gender, Language, and Culture.
"She returned home with just what she'd wanted: a fake school record showing that Abdul Hakim Husain, a former student, was sixteen years old. Her son, who hardly been a child, would at least now be treated like one by the criminal justice system." (Boo 123)
"The boy was not the problem; the problem was an arranged marriage at fifteen." (Boo 183)
"Asha had developed her sharp tongue as a child, working the fields of an impoverished village in the northeastern Maharastra. Pointed expression had been a useful defense when laboring among lecherous men." (Boo 29)