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Jewell, R.

Becoming Madame Mao #1

posted Jun 14, 2010, 7:27 PM by

Q&A # 6

posted Jun 14, 2010, 5:28 PM by   [ updated Jun 14, 2010, 6:25 PM ]

Q&A #5

posted May 7, 2010, 3:18 PM by

7. "The city may have chosen to ignore the ugly growth of Dharavi, but a cancer cannot be stopped simply by being declared illegal" (p. 134). Are there any other problems that go unacknowledged because they're too painful to face? If so, what impact does this have on the characters? 

I think a problem that goes unacknowledged is homeless people and poverty's. And also the ghettos. I think they are unacknowledged because there is so many of them that some people feel that they are to hard to fix or clean up. So they do not even try to help the people in these situations. 
Another one from the story is the rabid dogs that run around all over town. This is a problem because little kids might see a dog in the the park and want to go and play with it. But if they bite the little kids, then they will have Rabbies and may possibly die because their parents wont know whats wrong with them.
But poverty and people being homeless is a very big problem that is not being solved. There are many people that live every single day on the streets and sleep in bushes and bath in the Bay; that is disgusting. And I just think that if some people took a little bit of time out of their day to help somebody who is homeless and less fortunate than you, it would make the world a better place.

Q&A #4

posted May 7, 2010, 2:47 PM by

8. What do you think of Salim's decision to give Ahmed, the hit man, a picture of Maman? Did Salim have another choice? Is he guilty of murder? Did Ram have other options besides throwing Shantaram down the stairs? Are these violent acts justifiable considering the behavior of the victims?

In my opinion, I think that Salim's decision to give Ahmed a picture of Maman was good. He isn't guilty of murder because he didn't go and kill him. Salim did this because in the envelope was a picture of Abbas Rizvi who was getting Salim a role in a movie. Salim didn't really have another choice but to change the picture because if he hadn't, Abbas would have been killed and Salim's acting career never would take off and he wouldn't be famous. 

Ram didn't have any other options besides throwing Shantaram, Gudiya's father down the stairs because he was about to go into his chawl and rape or sexually harass Gudiya, his own daughter. So I think that Ram did the right thing because he saved Gudiya from being molested by her own father. That would have caused her emotional problems for the rest of her life. And also, I think that he didn't deserve to live with his family anymore because he kept on beating his wife and hurting his daughter by burning her with hot tea for example. She got put in the hospital because of him and just kept on drinking. 
I think that these violent acts are justifiable because the way that the victims were acting. The guy that Salim was working for was about to kill an innocent man. So Salim was justified to put Maman's picture in the envelope since he made people disabled for the rest of his life. And he was about to make Salim and Ram blind to make himself money. 
And for Shantaram, he deserved what he got done to him because he hurt his wife and his daughter physically. So he got what he deserved. 

Untitled Post

posted Apr 29, 2010, 7:56 PM by

4. Several characters, expecially Ram and Salim, are big movie fans. Are movies simply a form of escapism or do they carry a more significant role in the culture?
In my opinion, the type of movies that Ram and Salim saw in theatres were a way to escape from reality. They will watch those movies and think that they will be the hero and save everybody and be a so called gorgeous actress. So I think that it's a way for the boys to escape reality and, in a way, live a dream.
But it could play a part in the Indian culture because Armaan is a local celebrity and the way that he lives is part of some peoples culture. With the nice homes and having a lot of money, and also staying in nice hotels.
Theres not really a lot of ways to explain how the movies realate to the culture or how they use them to escape from reality..

Untitled Post

posted Apr 28, 2010, 9:10 PM by

3. In telling Gudiya's story, Ram asks, "But what was Gudiya's crime? simply that she was born a girl and Shantaram was her pather?" (pg. 68) Are there other women in this novel who are treated poorly simply because of their sex? Do any female characters not need Ram's protection? How would you describe his relationship with women?
In the novel, there are other women who are poorly treated just because they are female. For example, on the train when the dacoit says "give her your milk." And then the dacoit grins at her when she lifts up her shirt to feed the baby, and grabs one of her breasts (pg. 156) I think that, that was a moment where a women was treated poorly just because he was being a pig. Another moment is when the same dacoit grabs at Meenakshi's kameez and almost rips it in half, exposing her bra (pg. 157) I think this moment is a good examply of women being poorly treated because you dont just go and do that to somebody. It is rude and not gentleman like at all. I was grossed out when i read this part because I thought how gross that was of him to do that and then smile about it. What a sick person.
I don't think that all female characters need Ran's protection but when he killed the dacoit to save Meenakshi's, it was really sweet....even though he didn't really know that he was doing that.
And i would describe Ram's relationship with women as being protective some what, and very caring. He knows how to make them feel better: Gudiya for example, with her dad's sexual harassment. So i think that he can connect and get their trust pretty easily.


posted Apr 14, 2010, 3:17 PM by

2) Ram has a recurring dream of a tall woman with black hair that obscures her face. At what moments does he have this dream, and why? What does this woman represent? Is she his biological mother? A symbol of hope? Abandonment?

Well, I am not too far into the book, so I’m not sure how many times he re-dreams this. But when he was being taken into the interrogation room, and was being beaten by Godbole, the book said that he passed out and had a dream that she was there. The women said "My son...what are they doing to you?" I think that this woman is his biological mother, but it didn't say anything about him not having a biological mother in his life in the book yet... I think this is a sign of hope because he see's her and it gives him a motivation to keep on going and not sign the papers because he didn't cheat. I think that the woman represents a motivation to keep staying strong because if he tries hard enough, he might be able to see who she really is without her hair blocking her face.


I don’t think that this is a symbol of abandonment because he knows she’s his mom. In the book he yelled “MOM!!” I also haven’t read anything about her abandoning him in the book Q&A yet. So I’m sort of confused about the abandonment situation at the moment.  

I think that he has this dream because he is thinking about his mom and misses her while he is being kept hostage by the police, which is illegal. And he is really looking forward to getting out and seeing her since they have been apart for a while.

Q&A #6

posted Apr 14, 2010, 3:14 PM by

*okay, before i start writing i just wanted to say that this is the 4th time i have tried to post this blog entry*
How does this book make you feel?
This book made me feel very on edge the whole time I was reading it because of all the events that keep on happening to Ram. For example: the new priest who was homosexual who was staying in the giant house with Ram and Father Timothy. Another example would be when Ram and Salim were sitting in the movie theater and the famous actor was sexually harassing Salim while in the movie theatres.
So i guess the book made me feel really bad for both of them because these are not the only two events that happened to them. When they had to live in the thats small room next to those people who daughters was being sexually harassed by her own father. That specific part of the book made me feel very disgusted because that is just extremely wrong to do to your own daughter. Nasty.
Another part is when Maman came to the place they were staying, I dont remember what it was called, and he chose Ram and Salim to come and stay with him. But he was trying to make them blind and crippled to go and beg on the trains for money to make him rich. So that certain part of the book made me feel very uncomfortable because that is very creepy to find out that the person you are living with is trying to make you disabled for the rest of your life.

Untitled Post

posted Apr 3, 2010, 3:39 PM by

Chapter 4: 1) What is the significance of the statue of Jesus Enrique encounters?
I think the significance of the statue of Jesus is to show the people in the town that God is always with them. And since the statue is so much bigger than everybody in the town, it is watching over everybody. And I think it might help Enrique believe a litte bit more since he doesn't believe that He cares for him. I also think the significance of the statue was to show how much people believe in God in the town that the big statue is in. I think this because, they took the time to build the statue, so obviously they are very religious. But I think that the statue and the people might help him believe again because a lot of the migrants carry bibles and repeat passages from it as they are taking their journey for God to keep them safe from the trains, gangs, bandits, and the police. And also, Enrique gets helped a lot in the specifice town, so I think that the statue of Jesus really did help him; God was really watching over him. Whether he believed or not.

fixed blog!

posted Mar 22, 2010, 5:55 PM by   [ updated Apr 14, 2010, 3:50 PM ]

4) What predictions can you make as you read?
A prediction I can make as I read is that Maria- Isabel is pregnant. Another one I can make is that Enrique will make it to America because he is determined. No matter how many times he is sent back, he wants to go back soooooo bad because he wants to be with his mom. But I think that him and his mom are going to have problems when he gets there because she hasn't really been raising him pretty much his whole life. And Enrique will think that she can't tell him what to do because she isnt really his mom since she left him a long time ago. Which i think, will tare them apart as mother and son. My prediction is that their relationship will be torn apart of all this emotional drama. I think all this will happen because he thinks that his mom doesn't love him since she left him and his sister when they were really little.
Another prediction is that Enrique and Maria-Isabel won't work out as they planned because they will be far apart when he makes it to America. But they might be able to work it out since they are going to have a kid together, and she is planning on coming to America. But it will be hard to make the journey with her baby since girls are more susceptible to being raped while on the journey to America. But in my opinion, America will be better for them and their family once they get there.

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