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Literature Review Example: Slumdog Millionaire Q/A Book

3 pages
566 words
Sewanee University of the South
Type of paper: 
Literature review
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The book Slumdog Millionaire is an exciting narrative that portrays a typical life in the inner cities of India. It is an eye-opener to the real struggles that individuals undergo in their remote areas and it also debunks the perception that in a society that people are wealthy no people are struggling to earn even a simple living. The story that chronicles the life of Jamal Malik, an 18-year-old orphan in the slums of Mumbai India just exposes the weaknesses in the social tenets that hold societies. In a well-organized community, the orphans, widows, widowers, and cripples are considered as disadvantaged people hence the community has a moral duty to take care of them at the slightest opportunity.

Despite his tribulations as a street child, Jamal defies her age and limitations to come close to winning 20 million rupees on a show before being dramatically arrested by the police for alleged cheating. It startles that instead of the cops recognizing and appreciating the incredible ability of a disadvantaged boy, they intimidate him through arrests. The underlying contention leading to his arrest is the mere fact that he knows so much more than is expected of a person of his caliber. This part of the book arouses fundamental questions that the society must interrogate. First, does the general perception of the poor, orphans and other disadvantaged people predetermine their abilities? Do challenges in life imply that someone cannot achieve anything better? Why has the society set the limits so low for disadvantaged people?

The book also encourages the weak teenagers in the society who feel that their situations are a hindrance for them to achieve a better life. Jamal at 18 years of age exudes excellent resilience by overcoming each of the hurdles that life presented. From the streets as an urchin to broken love relationships and then police intimidation, the young boy still has the determination to prove his innocence in a way that arouses emotion. The teenage Jamal begins by recognizing various realities about himself including the fact that he is not a genius.

Based on his self-understanding, Jamal displays a fantastic answering streak on the Kaun Banega Crorepati which is an Indian version of a television show christened who wants to be a millionaire. From this reality, it is evident that ingenuity is not necessarily a recipe for success. One has to conduct an elaborate self-assessment, determine his or her limits but not allow challenges to undermine the potential to achieve higher aspirations. The story of Jamal reminds the readers to always perceive problems as opportunities that when well-navigated results in success. For instance, having been an orphan and victim of troubled love, anyone would expect the young man to give up about life entirely. Nonetheless, at the show, it becomes apparent that the issues of life and love occupy a center stage hence Jamal has the upper hand.

The story shows the incredibility of luck, self-belief, and ability to turn opportunities into more significant achievements. In Jamal, I see a character held in low esteem by the Indian societys caste system. The social network in India allows little room for social aggrandizement. In actual sense, it is interesting to track how Jamal progressively moves up to a higher caste despite his apparent limitations. The life of Jamal opens up the discourse about the extent to which a cast system undermines the genuine progress of people.

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