Tuesday, February 02, 2016

The Beautiful and the Damned: a portrait of the new India

by Siddhartha Deb

I'd always meant to read Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found, but I never got around to it, and now my library doesn't have it anymore. Jeez, it came out only 10 years ago!

But I did get to read this book, which is pretty decent and not too long. Each chapter looks at a different person or place (if I'm recalling correctly) that highlights a particular aspect of the exuberantly chaotic social landscape of modern India: literally a billion people, some fantastically rich and many desperately poor, a crowded country in a crowded part of the world. Not an exhaustive survey, just some interesting vignettes; a different author would have found different things interesting — no shortage of things to look at or ways of looking at India.

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