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Capitalism Paperback – 22 May 2014

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: HAYMARKET BOOKS (22 May 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608463850
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608463855
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 13.3 x 19 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 778,039 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Praise for Arundhati Roy's "Field Notes on Democracy"

"Gorgeously wrought . . . pitch-perfect prose. . . . In language of terrible beauty, she takes India's everyday tragedies and reminds us to be outraged all over again." --"Time"

"In her searing account, Roy asks whether our shriveled forms of democracy will be 'the endgame of the human race'--and shows vividly why this is a prospect not to be lightly dismissed." --Noam Chomsky

"The scale of what Roy surveys is staggering. Her pointed indictment is devastating." --The New York Times Book Review

"An electrifying political essayist... So fluent is her prose, so keen her understanding of global politics, and so resonant her objections to nuclear weapons, assaults against the environment, and the endless suffering of the poor that her essays are as uplifting as they are galvanizing." --Booklist


"Capitalism" feels like straight reportage from the front lines of a war. In every part of the world, the rich few keep getting richer on the backs of a population that continues to work harder and grow poorer for it. And Roy keeps sending these furious, intelligent bulletins to alert us to what's going on. More people than ever are listening to her." "The Stranger"

Praise for Arundhati Roy's "Field Notes on Democracy"

"Gorgeously wrought . . . pitch-perfect prose. . . . In language of terrible beauty, she takes India's everyday tragedies and reminds us to be outraged all over again." "Time"

"In her searing account, Roy asks whether our shriveled forms of democracy will be 'the endgame of the human race'and shows vividly why this is a prospect not to be lightly dismissed." Noam Chomsky

The scale of what Roy surveys is staggering. Her pointed indictment is devastating. The New York Times Book Review

An electrifying political essayist... So fluent is her prose, so keen her understanding of global politics, and so resonant her objections to nuclear weapons, assaults against the environment, and the endless suffering of the poor that her essays are as uplifting as they are galvanizing. Booklist
"

About the Author

Arundhati Roy studied architecture in New Delhi, where she now lives. She is the author of the novel "The God of Small Things," for which she received the 1997 Booker Prize. The novel has been translated into forty languages worldwide. She has written several non-fiction books, including "Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers" and "Capitalism: A Ghost Story," published by Haymarket Books.


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Format: Paperback
This is Roy's polemic account of the path India has trodden as a result of its fascination with the American way of life, a way that the political and corporate leaders of the USA have been selling to the world for decades. The result? Just as in America, the wealth of the nation is held by the smallest of minority - 'in a nation of 1.2 billion, India's one hundred richest people own assets equivalent to one quarter of the GDP'.

In a biting narrative she tells about the ills of capitalism and the self-serving policies that keeps capitalism growing in smaller and smaller number of the nation's population, Roy's account is as despondent as it is infuriating. She asserts that one should not be fooled by the corporate philanthropy. She illustrates with examples of how corporate foundations from America wins over protest groups like the Black Panther in the US and the ANC in South Africa, turning them into moderates and cracking down on fundamentalists - effectively doing the job for the corporate organisations.

Even if one were to think that this book is too vitriolic and polemic, the question remains whether the growing poverty in the world, especially in rich nations, can be alleviated with capitalistic policies? And if not, what are the rational alternatives? The answers are not easy to come by - unless knowledge is more freely disbursed.

A less polemical work on the same subject of the unequal wealth is Thomas Piketty's book, 'Capital in the Twenty-First Century'. That book was recently criticized for using inaccurate date, but Paul Krugman published an article in the New York Times defending Piketty's thesis - in fact, Krugman claimed that he (Krugman) warned of the problem in an article he wrote in 1992.
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Format: Paperback
Saw this by accident at Boston South Station. Why is it not better publicised in the UK?

The language is beautiful, but what it describes is the brutal reality of capitalism in all its not so <glory> in India today. Roy asks for 4 things at the end of the book, so desired and yet seemingly so unattainable. Recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Arundati Roy is a fearless champion of true democracy and reveals the dark underbelly of Indian politics, the shame of caste and the military occupation of Kashmir. Looks beyond the hype of economic growth to something a little closer to the truth.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars 39 reviews
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars she goes deep into the real players and hopeless widened gap between the poor and high tech middle class 25 Jun. 2014
By P. Rao - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a collection of her essays you will not expected to get light from mainstream media. Arundhati Roy's short sentences are full of punch goes right into the hearts of the reader and they are based on long dangerous process of her gathering information from ground reality. Despite all the hoopla about India being power house, she goes deep into the real players and hopeless widened gap between the poor and high tech middle class.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Infuriating, but entertaining. Polemic, but true. Short, but grand in scope and insight. 27 July 2014
By Michael Bohn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
With her outstanding ability to craft well-written, witty and biting sentences, and the canny insightfulness of her observations, Arundhati Roy achieves something quite amazing: an easy read that is infuriating, but entertaining, polemic, but true, short, but grand in scope and insight.

I’m not usually one for polemic writing and an anecdotal rather than academic approach to facts, and I’m not crazy about books that are actually collections of essays. Yet in her very own enraged, engaged and witty style, Arundhati Roy manages to bind it all together into one powerful narrative, and expose on less than 100 pages, more – at times surprising – aspects of the insidious nature of global capitalism (and on the threat it poses to our freedom and well-being), than a half dozen much longer academic treatises on the subject combined. While you will learn a lot about politics in what is purportedly the world’s largest democracy – India – the principles at work and the insights gained are universal in nature, so that if you don’t see the relevance of Indian politics to your life, you needn’t worry. This book is relevant! Among many other insights of global importance, it shows what happens if market dynamics and greed are left unchecked by an inadequate and corrupt political system. It shows that many things are not what they seem to be on the surface – and in your daily newscast.

To be sure, it cannot replace genuinely analytic inquiry into the effects of a “free market” system, such as Thomas Piketty undertakes in Capital in the Twenty-First Century, but no matter what your political persuasion, you will most probably walk away from this Ghost Story with a richer understanding of the world we live in and of an economic system that may have many virtues (its emphasis on individual freedom foremost), but that clear-thinking and astute citizens cannot leave without modification, if we wish to see our freedoms preserved – not only nominally and relegated to the make-believe form of consumer choice, but genuine freedom, in all actuality. In the same vein, I also recommend David Graeber, The Democracy Project.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does capitalism still generate interest? 2 Jun. 2014
By Hande Z - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is Roy's polemic account of the path India has trodden as a result of its fascination with the American way of life, a way that political and corporate leaders of the USA have been selling to the world for decades. The result? Just as in America, the wealth of the nation is held by the smallest of minority - in a nation of 1.2 billion, India's one hundred richest people own assets equivalent to one quarter of the GDP.

In a biting narrative Roy tells about the ills of capitalism and the self-serving policies that keep capitalism growing in smaller and smaller numbers of the nation's population. Her account is as despondent as it is infuriating. She asserts that one should not be fooled by the corporate philanthropy. She illustrates with examples of how corporate foundations from America win over protest groups like the Black Panther in the US and the ANC in South Africa, turning them into moderates who crack down on fundamentalists - effectively doing the job for the corporate organisations.

A less polemical work on the same subject of the unequal wealth is Thomas Piketty's book, 'Capital in the Twenty-First Century'. That book was recently criticized for using inaccurate data, but Paul Krugman published an article in The New York Times defending Piketty's thesis - in fact, Krugman claimed that he (Krugman) warned of the problem in an article he wrote in 1992.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Important and Searing Book on the Indian Polity 3 Jun. 2014
By Romi Mahajan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Arundhati Roy has once again does what she does best- in "Capitalism: A Ghost Story" she tears apart the muscular, fanciful renditions of India that one reads about in the WSJ, Barron's, or the fickle Indian press and tells it like it is- India's polity is riven by divisions along class, caste, gender, language, geographical, and religious divides; moreover, the nexus between big business and big politics (along with an oligopolistic media) has created war-like conditions across vast swaths of the country and, further, has created untenable living conditions for hundreds of millions of Indian citizens.

This book is also about the change public face of India, now interested in embracing power-politics and bigness versus any sense of justice, internally or externally.

Roy is in many ways not only a true progressive but also a foil to India's shrinking "liberal" community who like to profess great decency and erudition while destitution is commonplace right outside their doors.

Roy polarizes- and rightly so. That she herself is under such attack in a country she so clearly loves is a sign of the encroaching illiberalism of a country which once lay claim to a powerful vision (though not reality) of social justice.

Please read this book.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent reading 9 Jun. 2014
By Leroy Hawkins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ms. Roy tells a compelling story of the insidiousness of Capitalism. It has a right to exist and no one is against making money; however, the way in which they make it, is poison to the peoples of the world and their countries. The destructive behavior of "Global Capitalism" misdirects the essential goal of the human project from advancing mankind to advancing a few people. This has been done in the name of trickle-down economics, which, itself, has too few leaks.

To little attention is given to spreading the advances of knowledge because of the self-centeredness of a few people who celebrate their advantages and wish to remain so - advantaged. They forget that those below them bureaucratically are still those who put them where they are, the people need to understand their power to remove the advantaged into a more just position. Read the book!
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