Arundhati Roy

Never again will a single story be told as though it's the only one. -- John Berger

To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget. -- Arundhati Roy

Donald Rumsfeld said that his mission in the War Against Terror was to persuade the world that Americans must be allowed to continue their way of life. When the maddened king stamps his foot, slaves tremble in their quarters. So, standing here today, it's hard for me to say this, but "The American Way of Life" is simply not sustainable. Because it doesn't acknowledge that there is a world beyond America. -- Arundhati Roy

Indian activist, essayist and novelist Arundhati Roy (1961- ) trained as an architect. She shot to international fame when her first novel, the semi-autobiographical The God of Small Things, was the winner of the 1997 Booker Prize. Her other publications are collections of essays and polemics.

Fiction and non-fiction are only different techniques of story telling. For reasons that I don't fully understand, fiction dances out of me. And non-fiction is wrenched out by the aching broken world I wake up to every morning.

The theme of much of what I write, fiction as well as non-fiction is the relationship between power and powerlessness and the endless circular conflict they're engaged in.

Never again will a single story be told as though it's the only one. There can never be a single story, there only ways of seeing. So when I tell a story I tell it not as an ideologue who wishes to pitch one absolutist ideology against another but as a story teller who wants to share her way of seeing.

Although it might appear otherwise, my writing is not really about nations and histories, it is about power, about the paranoia and ruthlessness of power, about the physics of power

I believe that the accumulation of vast unfettered power by a state or a country, a corporation or an institution or even an individual a spouse a friend a sibling, regardless of ideology results in excesses.

Beautifully written, The God of Small Things was Arundhati Roy's first book and to date her one and only novel. She received an advance of half-a-million pounds.

The Ordinary Person's Guide to Empire is a collection of her speeches leading up to and beyond the illegal US attack on Iraq. Other collections include The Cost of Living and The Alegebra of Infinite Justice.

We the unauthorised Arundhati Roy, is a film not about Arundhati Roy, but about her words. It visualizes and sets to music the words of Arundhati Roy, specifically her famous 'Come September' speech, where she spoke on such things as the war on terror, corporate globalization, justice and the growing civil unrest.

Together with Vandana Shiva, Arundhati Roy is one of India's leading activists. She has attacked US foreign policy, in particular the illegal invasion of Iraq and attacks on Afghanistan, is a staunch opponent of globalisation and the too rapid industrialisation of India, is highly critical of Israel, accusing Israel of state terror and war crimes, and has called for an international boycott of Israel, has opposed the Narmada dam project and donated her Booker prize money to the dam campaign

In 2004 Arundhati Roy was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize, in 2002 the Lannan Cultural Freedom Prize.

Arundhati Roy was awarded the Sahitya Akademi award in 2006 for her collection of essays on contemporary issues, The Algebra of Infinite Justice, but she declined to accept.

Copies of books by Arundhati Roy have been registered as BookCrossing books.

BookCrossing books are released into the wild their progress checked through the Internet via a unique BookCrossing ID (BCID).


Literature
(c) Keith Parkins 2007-2008 -- April 2008 rev 1