Analysis of Balran Halwai from White Tiger by Aravind Adiga Essay

4496 Words Dec 27th, 2013 18 Pages
Extended Essay
Research Question


Is Balram Halwai a rounded character or is
he a mouthpiece of the author?

Balram Halwai- Protagonist or Mouthpiece?

Aravind Adiga’s The White Tiger’ is an epistolary novel consisting of a series of letters written by Balram Halwai, an entrepreneur who owns a taxi driving company, for the Chinese Premier, when he visits Bangalore. Balram Halwai is a man who has freed himself from the Darkness and now lives in the Light (The two India’s living side
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As Balram the narrator takes us through the journey of his life, the reader also journeys through the India of Laxmangarh, the collieries of Dhanbad and the urbanised and heavily polluted cities of Delhi and Bangalore. Balram's thoughts, penned in his letters to the Chinese Premier make the reader feel that the protagonist is the alter-ego of the author himself. The reader begins to doubt whether Balram Halwai has a character of his own or whether he is a representative of the writer. Hence the genesis of the research question: Is Balram Halwai a rounded character or is he a mouth-piece of the author? At the outset, I have analysed the narrative technique used by the author since Balram thinks a lot more than he says. As the novel is solely based on him, his actions prove to be the culminations of those thoughts. In the next chapter I have analysed the dark humour used in the novel. This humour, though usually gruesome and ghastly, often conveys in a stylistic fashion, some important details that the author wishes to record. Then I have explored the evolution of Balram’s character as the novel progresses. He evolves from a poor village boy to a rich heartless murderer. Next I have evaluated the imageries and symbols in the novel. These imageries and symbols include the names given to the various landlords of Laxmangarh, how Balram describes the divide between the poor and the rich of India and the ambience surrounding the portrayal of the two classes.

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