An analysis of two excerpts from the novel The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga shows that the text has an unconventional structure. Neither of the excerpts has a traditional plot, and the narrative instead focuses on the way in which the main character, Balram Halwai, sees India and its inhabitants.
Balram Halwai, one of the characters in the text, is a man who used to work as a driver for his rich boss. Balram eventually killed his master, took the money he found in the car, and started a new life as an entrepreneur. The first excerpt of the story also focuses on the collective character of Indian servants, whom Balram compares to roosters in a coop.
The events Balram talks about take place in modern India. While the first excerpt shows Balram’s ideas about the general Indian way of thinking, the second focuses on the city of Bangalore in particular. The social setting mainly focuses on the continuation of poverty and submissive attitudes and on aspects of Indian society.
The short story is told by Balram, who is both the main character and the first-person narrator. Balram’s accounts of the Indian servants and of Bangalore are subjective and deeply influenced by his own experiences.
The language mirrors the diverse atmosphere of India through the use of slang. The narrative is influenced by metaphors and symbols, which are used to highlight the features of the main character and the characteristics of poor Indian people as he views them. Direct address and rhetorical questions highlight the unusual quality of the text, as it is written in the form of a letter.
You can read a full analysis of the two excerpts on the following pages.