The White Tiger

Is Balram’s identification with the white tiger a precursor to the changes in his character?

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The India described by Balram is in the throes of a major transformation, heralded in part by the advent of globalization. India finds itself at the crossroads of developments in the fields of technology and outsourcing, as the nation adapts to address the needs of a global economy. Balram recognizes and hopes to ride this wave of the future with his White Tiger Technology Drivers business in Bangalore, but this force of globalization has a darker component for him as well. It threatens and disenfranchises those adhering to a traditional way of life, such as his family in Laxmangarh. Hence, he must change who he is in order to compete in this new world. Adiga thus vividly conjures the tension between the old and new India, suggesting that succeeding in this world (as Balram does) requires a flurry of ethical and personal compromises.


The White Tiger