Arundhati Roy at Washington Square Park Wednesday, November 16th 12:30 p.m.

Arundhati Roy

If you’ve ever heard Arundhati Roy speak – and I had the opportunity at Riverside Church in 2003 – then you know that she is worth any effort involved to do so ! If not, you will have your chance on Wednesday afternoon, November 16th at Washington Square Park from 12:30 – 1:15 p.m. when she will appear courtesy of the People’s University.

Note: Rain or shine – near Arch / Fountain.

The People’s University “brings education out from the classrooms and into public spaces.” Washington Square Park is their focal point.

About Arundhati Roy:

Arundhati Roy won the Booker Prize in 1997 for her novel, The God of Small Things. Her non-fiction work includes An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire, Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers, and Broken Republic. An impassioned critic of neo-imperialism, military occupations, and violent models of economic ‘development’, Roy was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in 2004. Her consistent exposure of the Indian state’s repressive policies has led to her being variously labelled a seditionist, secessionist, Maoist and unpatriotic troublemaker.

Roy was trained as an architect and worked as a production designer before the acclaim and fame she received for The God of Small Things led her on other paths. That book remains her only novel – since then she has written non-fiction and writes and speaks out on issues of concern to her.

“Pity the nation that has to silence its writers for speaking their minds… Pity the nation that needs to jail those who ask for justice while communal killers, mass murderers, corporate scamsters, looters, rapists and those who prey on the poorest of the poor, roam free.” (Arundhati Roy quote)

More on the People’s University:

The People’s University draws inspiration from the occupations on Wall Street, other cities in the United States, and throughout the world.

The People’s University acknowledges that NYU, and other private universities in New York City and beyond, have colonized our neighborhoods, erecting physical and social barriers to inclusion. The People’s University will now decolonize the public space at the center of NYU’s real estate empire—Washington Square Park.

The People’s University aims to remove education from the marketplace. Learning must be free of charge, and opportunities for education must be plentiful, not scarce. The People’s University is one small step in that direction, because it says that education is not a consumer good. It is what the 99% can and must share in common.

The People’s University is organized in solidarity with #OWS in Liberty Square and complements the education and empowerment work ongoing there.

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6 thoughts on “Arundhati Roy at Washington Square Park Wednesday, November 16th 12:30 p.m.”

  1. Arundhati Roy was great as always, and It was kind of Judson Memorial Church to let us in bec. it was raining.
    Maybe the church had another event scheduled, and that was why Roy only spoke for 15 minutes, altho she was scheduled to speak for 45.
    I had come in from NJ for the talk, so that was a disappointment.
    I thot the peoples’ mike was unnessesary in this case, as we all could have heard her with no mike.

  2. Hey George,

    Thanks for your update. Glad you made it. I got there late but did not realize that she’d only been going for 15 minutes. Maybe that was due to her schedule? Although she hung around for a bit longer so… I don’t know.

    She is a pleasure – she’s so quick and clever and funny, even when talking about things that are a bit, uh, dour.

    When I was there, the peoples’ mike was not being used — Maybe on short notice they couldn’t set up a real microphone?

    That is a bit short for coming in for the talk from New Jersey. I don’t know if she’s appearing anywhere else. Thanks for your comment!


  3. Can someone provide a transcript of the speech? I would rather read it because I too didn’t think the peoples’ mic was necessary in this instance, it takes way from her speaking power.

  4. Cathryn,
    thanks for the link. Probably when you came in, they were on to the questions, for which she just spoke, and indeed, could be clearly heard.

    I thought these two points she made in the questioning period were very on target:
    1. Where were the “minorities” in the OWS movement
    2. That the poor in India stopped a mining company.


  5. Hi Eagle,

    I wouldn’t mind reading it either. I don’t know if Democracy Now! ended up using some – they were there filming – and they often have transcripts. I haven’t had a chance to look around but if I can I will.


    I heard a little of both of those topics but not in full detail partly because of sound where I was and when I arrived. So, that’s good to know (and good reason to watch video or find transcript to learn more). Thank you.



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