It's as though the people of India have been rounded up and
loaded onto two convoys of trucks (a huge big one and a tiny
little one) that have set off resolutely in opposite directions.
The tiny convoy is on its way to a glittering destination somewhere
near the top of the world. The other convoy just melts into the darkness
and disappears. A cursory survey that tallies the caste, class and religion
of who gets to be on which convoy would make a good Lazy Person's
concise Guide to the History of India. For some of us, life in India is like
being suspended between two of the trucks, one leg in each convoy,
and being neatly dismembered as they move apart, not bodily, but
emotionally and intellectually.
(from "The Ladies Have Feelings, So ... Shall We Leave it to
the Experts?" -- based on a talk given at Hampshire College,
Amherst, Massachusetts, 2001.)