“Arundhati Roy is one of the most confident and original thinkers of our time.”
“The scale of what Roy surveys is staggering. Her pointed indictment is devastating.”
—The New York Times Book Review
Bookended by her two award-winning novels, The God of Small Things (1997) and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (2017), My Seditious Heart collects the work of a two-decade period when Arundhati Roy devoted herself to the political essay as a way of opening up space for justice, rights, and freedoms in an increasingly hostile world. Taken together, the essays speak in a voice of unique spirit, marked by compassion, clarity, and courage. Radical and superbly readable, they speak always in defense of the collective, of the individual and of the land, in the face of the destructive logic of financial, social, religious, military, and governmental elites.
Arundhati Roy studied architecture in New Delhi where she now lives. She is the author of the novels The God of Small Things, for which she received the 1997 Booker Prize, and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness. She has written several nonfiction books, including Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers, Capitalism: A Ghost Story, Walking with the Comrades, Things That Can and Cannot Be Said (with John Cusack), and The End of Imagination. She is the recipient of the 2002 Lannan Cultural Freedom Prize.
"These studies are trenchant, still relevant and frequently alarming....Roy’s done the research, and she has all the receipts....Roy writes in her foreword that “Not one iota of my anger has diminished” since the time of writing these essays. Yet they do not come across as angry. Instead, their impact comes from their precision, research and damningly clear reportage."
“Roy’s fury is suited to these horrible and therefore simpler times; it’s more tuned to the reality on the ground than restraint and statistics. Roy started writing nonfiction when the world felt better. My Seditious Heart arrives to tell us not that the world has deteriorated but that it was never as fine as we once believed.”
"Arundhati Roy’s new essay collection, My Seditious Heart, every page of which gifts you her far seeing, her calm and intelligent urgency, the wisdom and relief of her articulacy, her courage.”
—Ali Smith, The Guardian
"Roy’s ... nonfictional engagement with the conflicts and traumas of a heedlessly globalized world has manifested the virtues of an unflinching emotional as well as political intelligence. Her lucid and probing essays offer sharp insights on a range of matters, from crony capitalism and environmental depredation to the perils of nationalism and, in her most recent work, the insidiousness of the Hindu caste system. In an age of intellectual logrolling and mass-manufactured infotainment, she continues to offer bracing ways of seeing, thinking and feeling.”
—Pankaj Mishra, Time magazine
"The writing is passionate, seething with anger; it clearly takes sides, and cannot be accused of ideological ambiguity."
“[T]here is an intellectual historian in Roy, always contextualizing and looking at the broader picture....Few people write as Roy does, in a soft lilting voice that persuades us to walk with her, and to plot our approaches together.”