But not for the first time, Arzee has it all wrong! The Noor is about to be closed down, taking away to its grave all his hopes of this world and his walls against it. A new darkness threatens, more sinister than the comforting womb-night of the Noor. Arzee knows he will be crushed by that new cycle of rage and impotence, all these added to the perpetual indignity of walking face-to-face with "the crotches and asses of this world".
Arzee the Dwarf follows Arzee over two weeks, setting off Arzee's frenzied plotting and pleading against the beating and pulsing of the great city around him. The narration vividly brings to life not just the protagonist, but also a host of characters to whom Arzee turns in his hour of need: the departing head projectionist Phiroz, the sneering faux-gangster Deepak, the poetical taxi-driver Dashrath Tiwari, the enigmatic hairdresser Monique, and the garrulous and homely Shireen.
Can Arzee fight off all the forces that menace his world, or will the vast city that he loves succeed in crushing him? Chandrahas Choudhury's bittersweet comedy, selected by World Literature Today as one of 60 essential works of modern Indian literature in English, is a novel about the strange beauty of human dreaming.
"Pop Culture India! Media, Arts, and Lifestyle" follows the rise of modern India's pop culture world, especially since the 1980s, when relaxed censorship and economic liberalization led to an explosion in movies, music, mass media, consumerism, spiritual practices, and more. It is a captivating introduction to a diverse nation whose appetite for entertainment has led to some surprising twists and turns in recent history.
How did a popular Indian television series spark a change in government and the rise of Hindu nationalism? Are some Bollywood film companies laundering money for organized crime, or even al Qaeda? What accounts for the overwhelming popularity of that quaint vestige of colonialism, cricket? The answers, and many more intriguing insights, await the reader in "Pop Culture India!"