The White Tiger is a popular novel written by Aravind Adiga that was published in 2008. It tells the story of Balram Halwai, an ambitious young man from India who uses his cunning and wit to escape a life of servitude and rise to success.
Throughout the novel, readers are presented with a variety of thought-provoking quotes which provide insight into the characters’ lives and experiences.
About The White Tiger Novel
The White Tiger tells the story of Balram Halwai, a young man from the lowest caste in India, as he rises from poverty and oppression to become an entrepreneur. The novel illuminates the dark side of India’s economic boom and corruption through Balram’s journey of self-discovery.
The book has been critically acclaimed and won multiple awards, including the Man Booker Prize in 2008. In addition, it has been adapted into a successful Netflix movie directed by Ramin Bahrani in 2021. The book is set primarily in Delhi and Bangalore and focuses on inequality, class struggle, social mobility, and justice.
About The Author Arvind Adiga
Arvind Adiga was born in Madras, India, and grew up in Mangalore. He completed his Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia University, where he specialized in English Literature. After graduating, he moved to New Delhi to pursue a career as a writer.
Adiga is best known for his 2008 novel The White Tiger, which won the 40th Man Booker Prize for Fiction. The story follows Balram Halwai, a rickshaw puller-turned-entrepreneur, as he moves through life and attempts to escape poverty by any means possible.
His work has been critically acclaimed by literary critics around the world and has earned him recognition, including the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and Hindu Literary Award, among others.
Here are the Best White Tiger Quotes
Welcome to the wild and wonderful world of the White Tiger! Since its publication in 2008, The White Tiger has become a cultural sensation, inspiring people to think outside of society’s norms and embrace their own individuality.
“The moment you recognize what is beautiful in this world, you stop being a slave.”
This thought-provoking quote from Arvind Adiga may leave you scratching your head. After all, what does it mean to stop being a slave? This quote is meant to make us think about how we interact with the world around us and our relationships with others.
Are we slaves to our jobs, responsibilities, and even technology? Are there moments when we feel bound by a certain routine or obligation? It’s possible that this quote is trying to get us thinking about whether we truly appreciate the beauty of everyday life.
By recognizing and honoring the beauty of life, this quote suggests that you can free yourself from anything that weighs down on your spirit.
“Strange thoughts brew in your heart when you spend too much time with old books.”
This quote suggests that when someone spends a lot of time reading old books, they may have unusual or unexpected thoughts or ideas. It suggests that reading can be a source of inspiration or contemplation and lead to developing new perspectives and ideas.
The phrase “strange thoughts” implies that the thoughts that come from reading old books may be unexpected and different from those that a person might normally have.
Overall, this quote suggests that reading can be a powerful source of intellectual and creative growth and can profoundly influence how a person thinks and views the world.
“So I stood around that big square of books. Standing around books, even books in a foreign language, you feel a kind of electricity buzzing up toward you, Your Excellency. It just happens the way you get erect around girls wearing tight jeans. Except here, what happens is that your brain starts to hum.”
“Sometimes I wonder, Balram. I wonder what’s the point of living. I really wonder…’ The point of living? My heart pounded The point of your living is that if you die, who’s going to pay me three and a half thousand rupees a month?”
“It’s amazing. The moment you show cash, everyone knows your language.”
This quote from Arvind Adiga is definitely an interesting one, as it relates to the power of money in a humorous way. Who hasn’t experienced this same thing? When you show cash, suddenly, everyone understands your language! It’s almost like cash has its own universal language that transcends any verbal difference.
It’s funny how money can bring people together, regardless of their backgrounds or languages. Whether you’re trying to buy something in a foreign country or just pay for dinner with friends at home, showing cash will ensure everyone understands your message perfectly!
“Never before in human history have so few owed so much to so many, Mr. Jiabao. A handful of men in this country have trained the remaining 99.9 percent—as strong, as talented, as intelligent in every way—to exist in perpetual servitude; a servitude so strong that you can put the key of his emancipation in a man’s hands and he will throw it back at you with a curse.”
“But isn’t it likely that everyone in this world…has killed someone or other on their way to the top?…All I wanted was a chance to be a man–and for that, one murder is enough.”
“In terms of formal education, I may somewhat lacking. I never finished school. I am a self-taught entrepreneur, that’s the best kind there is, trust me.”
Incidentally, sir, while we’re on the topic of yoga – may I just say that an hour of deep breathing, yoga, and meditation in the morning constitutes the perfect start to the entrepreneur’s day. How I would handle the stresses of this fucking business without yoga, I have no idea. Make yoga a must in all Chinese schools – that’s my suggestion.
“…the future of the world lies with the yellow man and the brown man now that our erstwhile master, the white-skinned man, has wasted himself through buggery, cell phone usage, and drug abuse.”
The White Tiger Quotes About Corruption
The White Tiger novel showcases India’s socio-economic divide, corruption, and poverty. Through engaging storytelling and layered characters, this powerful story takes readers on an emotional rollercoaster as one man attempts to make his way up from extreme hardship.
While The White Tiger depicts many injustices within Indian society, it also highlights various quotes about corruption, both small-scale everyday examples and big institutionalized forms, to powerfully demonstrate the prevalence of corruption in all levels of life. Read on to discover some of the most powerful quotes regarding corruption featured within this acclaimed modern classic!
“Go to Old Delhi, and look at the way they keep chickens there in the market. Hundred of pale hens and brightly colored roosters, stuffed tightly into wire-mesh cages. They see the organs of their brothers lying around them. They know they are next, yet they cannot rebel. They do not try to get out of the coop. The very same thing is done with humans in this country.”
“Let animals live like animals; let humans live like humans. That’s my whole philosophy in a sentence.”
“Iqbal, that great poet, was so right. The moment you recognize what is beautiful in this world, you stop being a slave. To hell with the Naxals and their guns shipped from China. If you taught every poor boy how to paint, that would be the end of the rich in India.”
“It is an ancient and venerated custom of people in my country to start a story by praying to a Higher Power. “The trustworthiness of servants is the basis of the entire Indian economy.”
The quote may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s actually a rather accurate assessment of India’s economic success. After all, who else would keep things running so smoothly?
One thing is for sure, Indians take a lot of pride in their ability to serve. Whether taxi drivers or waiters, domestic staff, or hotel workers, there’s an understanding that quality service demands respect and loyalty. And that kind of trustworthiness helps create stability in the economy.
So while you may chuckle at Arvind Adiga’s quote as a joke, there’s actually some truth to it, perhaps more than we realize!
“Apparently, sir you Chinese are far ahead of us in every respect, except that you don’t have entrepreneurs. And our nation, though it has no drinking water, electricity, sewage system, public transportation, sense of hygiene, discipline, courtesy, or punctuality, ‘’does’’ have entrepreneurs. Thousands and thousands of them. Especially in the field of technology. And these entrepreneurs—”we” entrepreneurs—have set up all these outsourcing companies that virtually run America now.”
“These are the three main diseases of this country, sir: typhoid, cholera, and election fever. This last one is the worst; it makes people talk and talk about things that they have no say in … Would they do it this time? Would they beat the Great Socialist and win the elections? Had they raised enough money of their own, and bribed enough policemen, and bought enough fingerprints of their own, to win? Like eunuchs discussing the Kama Sutra, the voters discuss the elections in Laxmangarh.”
The White Tiger Quotes About Light And Darkness
In Arvind Adiga’s acclaimed novel “The White Tiger,” light and darkness function as dual symbols of hope and despair, freedom and bondage. These powerful motifs are scattered throughout the narrative, serving as warnings for protagonist Balram Halwai, alternately hopeful signs that he can rise against his oppressive society or reminders of how high the stakes become when attempting to do so.
As you explore this fascinating story through its quotes about light and darkness, pay close attention to their nuances; they might reveal more than is initially apparent on the surface:
“See, the poor dream all their lives of getting enough to eat and looking like the rich. And what do the rich dream of?? Losing weight and looking like the poor.”
“I put my hand out and wiped the vomit from his lips, and cooed soothing words to him. It squeezed my heart to see him suffer like this – but where my genuine concern for him ended and where my self-interest began, I could not tell: no servant can ever tell what the motives of his heart are. Do we loathe our masters behind a facade of love – or do we love them behind a facade of loathing? We are made mysteries to ourselves by the Rooster Coop we are locked in.”
“You ask ‘Are you a man or a demon?’ Neither, I say. I have woken up, and the rest of you are sleeping, and that is the only difference between us.”
“The dreams of the rich, and the dreams of the poor – they never overlap, do they?”
“Neither you nor I speak English, but there are some things that can be said only in English.”
“Do we loathe our masters behind a facade of love – or do we love them behind a facade of loathing?”
The quote suggests that people’s feelings towards those in positions of power or authority are complex and may not always be as they seem. The phrase “masters” refers to those who have power or control over others, and “loathe” means to hate or detest. “Facade” refers to a false appearance or front presented to the world.
So the quote asks whether people hide their hatred for those in positions of power behind a façade of love or whether they truly love those people but only show hatred on the surface.
It suggests that people’s true feelings towards those in positions of power may be more complicated than they appear and that they may be hiding their true emotions behind a facade.
The Self-Made Man
It dehumanizes poor people and implies that anyone born poor is subservient and servile.
You and only you are responsible for yourself.
Let’s Wind Up…
The White Tiger is full of quotes that will make you think, laugh, and ponder. From Balram’s “Artists can’t be starving” to Pinky Madam’s “In India, it is not enough to be a man.
You must be a monster,” there are plenty of memorable phrases that will stay with you long after you finish the book. The White Tiger has everything if you’re looking for wisdom, wit, or sarcasm! So what are you waiting for?