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The Doctor and the Saint
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About the Author

Arundhati Roy studied architecture in New Delhi, where she now lives. She is the author of the novel The God of Small Things, for which she received the 1997 Booker Prize. The novel has been translated into forty languages worldwide. She has written several non-fiction books, including Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers and Capitalism: A Ghost Story.

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"Arundhati Roy is one of the few great revolutionary intellectuals in our time . . . courageous, visionary and erudite . . . The Doctor and the Saint puts a spotlight on the great B. R. Ambedkar, who is wrongly overshadowed by Gandhi. In short, Roy is a grand figure who challenges us all! --Cornel West

If you've ever wanted confirmation that you must never deliberately humiliate or harm anyone, read The Doctor and the Saint: Caste, Race, and Annihilation of Caste: The Debate Between B. R. Ambedkar and M. K. Gandhi, by Arundhati Roy. In this book we learn almost more than we can bear about the miserable treatment in India of the 'Dalits' or 'those who are broken to pieces.' We also learn, with pain, that Gandhi, as much as we venerate and are grateful to him for all the social and spiritual illumination he has cast around the world, could never quite speak up decisively on the question of destroying the horrendous system in India that lives on to this day, causing intolerable pain and suffering to people whose only 'fault' is the caste into which they are born. What we learn also is that there was someone else, during Gandhi's time, someone more sure that the caste system must be completely destroyed, a man, an 'untouchable' who became a lawyer, who struggled hard for his people and for India, a man most of us never heard of: B. R. Ambedkar. It is this man's work on which Roy shines a light, reminding us perhaps that behind every 'great' being we've heard about, there stands another whose work and service to humanity we may never know, until the universe locates a messenger equal to the task of helping us see.

--Alice Walker

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