October 1, 2011|
Arundhati Roy "No novel will change the world." "In the new book I describe the days and nights running with the Maoists in the jungle." Interview Indian author who left the writings of fiction for complaint
Arundhati Roy is the author of The God of Small Things, international bestseller. And it is the same as when he won a Booker Prize in 35 years, thanks to that book, then spent the next fifteen to act as a critical conscience in the face of global disasters imperialism in India (Bhopal, large dams, the curse for the poor which is the other side of the Silicon Valley of the East). So from 1996 is repeated the same question: why choose to abandon the commitment to dedicate the novels? Why, back in the most recent book, Broken Republic, just published in English met by fierce controversy and interest and being published in Italian by Guanda, tell the world with painful involvement of bauxite ore to the assault of a mountain that costs life and freedom to a tribe, a political crime in Andhra Pradesh, the Maoist guerrillas of bizarre and ferocious "Naxalites" which has gone for a week to live and walk in the jungle? Roy has over fifteen years in any case have learned patience, because it still shows the beautiful smile when he explained the first time that no, he was not going to become just "a nice lady who writes novels." And he kept his word.
Why, in short, just write essays of complaint and controversy?
"The best answer is that I had, I have not, your choice. As the writers do not choose their stories but they are, myself included, chosen by them, so the reality in a country where democracy is a theater behind which flares up the brutality, injustice, and puts you ahead of situations that call for a voice to be told. I write, as I have done for many years and many books, when I can not remain silent. And to do it using all the skills at my disposal, that of the storyteller and the intellectual who needs to understand how things really are. To oversimplify, without telling what it is not easy. "
Have you ever said that making fiction is like dancing, non-fiction is like walking ...
"I said, about the pace. But in fact, "On the road with his companions," the central chapter of the new book, where days and nights running account with the Maoists in the jungle, was a little 'dance. There is also the fear, the emotion, hope, and of course the violence of warfare. "
Before which expresses this time more questions than convictions, as has been reprimanded. He writes in part: "one who dies of hunger can not propose a hunger strike to protest."
"It's impossible to sympathize entirely with certain groups like the Maoists and their methods. But it is also true that after a long and spectacular success of the nonviolent movement, we have many things have worsened. More and more police, more and more violence and destruction, more and more radical opposition between the interests of the few and the lives of many. All this has changed me? Maybe. But I think we have changed things more than me. "
In Europe and America's commitment, the decline of traditional ideologies, has a predominantly humanitarian. In Italy there is a special case of commitment, even at great cost, and malfeasance against the Mafia.
"I know and understand the case Saviano. But in the West people have a relationship "civilized" with democracy, not question it poses to its limits. One reason, I remember, most of the end of ideologies, is that the free market price is paid, especially in other parts of the world. "
What do you think of a vocation to the commitment of so many Western intellectuals and personalities?
"I distinguish. Tomorrow in Ferrara will speak at the meeting of the International Festival of commitment and writing with John Berger, who is for me a friend and an example of searching for truth in the language of the narrative. And then there are the celebrities who line up for "social work". But it's different when you deploy "for cause" as if I did for a product. And there is a foolproof system to distinguish, just check the system for your "endorsement" is comfortable, or makes them uncomfortable. In India there is a steel plant which penetrates the mountains and destroy entire populations, but also promotes a program to protect tribal crafts .... "
It seems that globalization, rather than unite, to expel ...
"Globalization is an ambiguous word. It also contains September 11 which left the United States weakened, the international economic collapse makes it more unstable the Western world. There is food for thought, rather than face this Indian elites are increasingly blindly devoted to the free market. "
Will that also seems to us that there growth is unstoppable ...
"Do not forget to add" but only for the elite. " Much depends on the distance from the fact that it is impossible for me not to see it and not cry. "
Say it with empathy of the narrative, even in the case of his debut novel, seemed formidable a shortcut between cultures and continents. The direct involvement in the complaint is not likely to be a longer way to communicate?
"It may seem so, if the goal is to convince someone or many. But the urgency to intervene where and when drama and tragedy is happening is completely different, do not have the time of the creation and circulation of literature that changes public opinion. For me it's too hard to be there and do not act now. Silenced in these cases, is to betray oneself. Maybe even the return time to choose how to say things. "
*This is an article translated from Italian to English, any mistakes made are because of the loss in translation.