Slumdog Millionaire: The Power of Urbanization and Its Impact on Poverty

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Slumdog Millionaire takes place in India. It is about a young man who is on a game show and has flashbacks of why he got all the answers right. The young man, Jamal Malik, is accused of cheating. In his flashbacks, you see glimpses of his culture, religion, language, and economy. The movie begins with a flash of India. You can see that it is a country that suffers from poverty. The homes are all very close together in a densely populated area. The homes are made with any material that you could find on the streets, and there is dirt and mud roads. This allows you to see the difference in core countries, versus the periphery ones.

Jamal starts to talk about where he grew up and where he lived. As a young child Jamal had to go to school to get an education. In the movie it shows him not wanting to have to go to school. You could see that the whole class was boys. This is because in many parts of the world, women and girls are not allowed to have an education or go to school at all. When Jamal and his friend ran away from the “foster” home that they were in the ran to the trains and jumped on them. There were already people on the tops of the trains. You can clearly see that all of these people are very welcoming, which is part of their culture. Being hospitable is one of the people’s customs. The economy in India is very different in the city versus the town where Jamal grew up in. The movie shows the city. There are many tourists. This is one way that the city makes its money.

All of the tourists are in nicer clothes and have money. When Jamal gets older, he gets a job at a call center. Here, you do not have to have an education of high standards. Even though he was able to attend school for a short period of time, his education was still not very good. At this job, he was able to make some money to support himself. The Taj Mahal is shown in the movie. This is a place where the people can go and pray. While a lot of Indians follow the religious practice of Hinduism, many are Muslims. Islam is a universalizing religion, and Jamal later converts to a muslim. When Jamal and his friend ran away, the had to learn a new language, english. This was the lingua franca. This is how Jamal and his friend were also able to get a job. Jamal’s friend later finds Jamal and tells him that the childhood slums they grew up in in now part of an industrial city. This was due to urbanization.

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