A true story of slum life Nov 28, 2013
Behind the beautiful forevers is presented as a story, but it turns out to be all true, even the names, as told to reporter Katherine Boo. It is a shocking description of the lives of residents of Annawadi, a slum by a sewage lake near the airport, surrounded by luxury hotels and billboards advertising floor tiles said to be ‘beautiful forever’.
The main character, Adbul, deals in recyclable materials, and tries to resist the corruption around him. Hospital surgeons demand under-the-table money, government officials and bank executives all get a cut in implementing government ‘anti-poverty’ schemes, and in the justice system ‘innocence and guilt could be bought and sold like a kilo of polyurethane bags’.
What does this do to people’s capacity for moral action? As the author concludes, ‘the astonishment is that some people are good’.