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The Reader's Den Questions for Week 4: "The Rooster Coop"
In his novel, Adiga highlights the dichotomy between the rich and the poor. He discusses the poorer Indian peoples' subservient relationship with their rich masters and their reluctance to rebel against the establishment because of ingrained and learned beliefs passed down from generation to generation. The rooster coop reflects the desperate existence of the poor in India and the perpetual power of the rich to manipulate the system to suit their needs. "Hundreds of pale hens and brightly colored roosters, stuffed tightly into wire-mesh cages, packed as tightly as worms in a belly, pecking each other, jostling for breathing space; the whole cage giving off a horrible stench--the stench of terrified, feathered flesh. On the wooden desk above his coop sits a grinning young brother, showing off the flesh and organs of a recently chopped-up chicken, still oleaginous with a coating of dark blood. The roosters in the coop smell the blood from above. They see the organs of their brothers lying around them. They know they're next. Yet they do not rebel. They do not try to get out of the coop" (p.147).
What is Balram's perspective on how and why the Rooster Coop works?
To what extent is the narrator finally able to break this obedience to tradition?