The Inheritance of Loss

The Inheritance of Loss

The Inheritance of Loss Chapter 34 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
A week after the library trip, the books are returned, but the camera is not, as the picture appears to be focused on the bridge. Father Booty apologizes, but the police don’t listen. They visit his home and turn everything upside down, eventually discovering that Father Booty is residing in India illegally. He must leave Kalimpong in two weeks, though he has been living there for forty-five years.
Even in a place where the law is slowly dissolving, the police still have the power to arbitrarily pursue certain crimes over others. Even though Father Booty committed a crime, his crime is relatively minimal compared to the robberies being made by the GNLF. Thus, the upheaval is providing opportunities for people to claim power over others, and particularly to take revenge on the wealthy.
Themes
Poverty vs. Privilege Theme Icon
Power and Humiliation Theme Icon
Father Booty tries to find people to help him, particularly those who made regular trips to his dairy farm. This harms him even further, however, as foreign nationals are not allowed to own property, and Uncle Potty had actually signed the papers on behalf of his friend. Uncle Potty offers to take care of the dairy farm while the trouble is sorted out.
Father Booty’s situation provides a parallel to the many illegal immigrants residing in the United States—but it also demonstrates a difference between the two situations. Whereas Father Booty is able to live in the open, owning property and eventually returning to Switzerland no worse for wear, people like Biju must always live in hiding and have a much more difficult time finding opportunity to make a living.
Themes
Colonialism and Globalization Theme Icon
Poverty vs. Privilege Theme Icon
Father Booty isn’t comforted by Uncle Potty’s assurance, since Potty is undependable and an alcoholic. Sai grows angry at these circumstances, believing that this is Gyan and the GNLF’s doing. Her mind returns to the day of the gun robbery, when everything started to go wrong.
As Gyan will also argue later, it is a particularly privileged perspective to think that one person’s deportation back to Switzerland is not worth the political equality of thousands of people.
Themes
Poverty vs. Privilege Theme Icon