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Arundhati Roy
Modern and Traditional
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I don't mean to put a simplistic value judgment on this peculiar
form of "progress" by suggesting that Modern is Good and
Traditional is Bad -- or vice versa. What's hard to reconcile
oneself to, both personally and politically, is the schizophrenic
nature of it. That applies not just to the ancient/modern conundrum
but to the utter illogic of what appears to be the current national
enterprise. In the lane behind my house, every night I walk past
road gangs of emaciated laborers digging a trench to lay fiber-optic
cables to speed up our digital revolution. In the bitter winter cold,
they work by the light of a few candles.

(from "The Ladies Have Feelings, So ... Shall We Leave it to
the Experts?" -- based on a talk given at Hampshire College,
Amherst, Massachusetts, 2001.)


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