Behind the Beautiful Forevers Essay

1136 Words Dec 9th, 2012 5 Pages
Brett Potter
HST 104 Section 002
Yixin Chen
27 November 2012
The Poverty of Annawadi as seen in Behind the Beautiful Forevers The city of Mumbai has seen much growth in the past years. A string of elegant hotels have been set up for travelers and high-class business men. An ever growing, top of the line airport has been built for those coming in and out of the country. From the outside, Mumbai seems to have taken a liking to being internationally integrated with the rest of world, otherwise known as globalization. This is not the case, however; as seen in Katherine Boo’s novel Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity. This novel is set in a slum right next to the Mumbai International Airport called
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This can be seen in the novel with Abdul’s father, who suffers from tuberculosis. Diseases like tuberculosis are common in the streets of Annawadi and numerous slums just like it. This makes it hard for Abdul’s father to work which means he can not make money to support his family. This is a common problem in many slums for many families who have members suffering from disease. Another problem is the upper class that dwells within Mumbai. While the upper class is the minority class in Mumbai, they control close to all of Mumbai’s profits saving it all for themselves and not helping those in need. The fact that such a small percentage of Mumbai’s inhabitants controls a large percentage of its wealth is major reason why so many poverty stricken people were forced to live in slums like Annawadi. A third reason for the poverty of Annawadi can be seen in its slum lords. The slums lords have total control over a slum and its inhabitants. If a person crosses paths with a slum lord, they are as good as dead. This fear of the power of slum lords keeps the people down and makes it almost impossible to rise out of poverty. In Behind the Beautiful Forevers, Katherine Boo writes “A decent life was the train that hadn’t hit you, the slumlord you hadn’t offended, the malaria you hadn’t caught” (Page 45). These are all factors in why Annawadi faced such severe poverty. It is easy to say that these all had an effect on Annawadi’s absence
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