I think that the environment is the most significant factor in this era. This is especially because of the discussions regarding the green revolution, which came about as a way of averting the famine. The text contains a lot of information of the revolution, including the elements that characterized this period. There was much improvement in agriculture and food production during this time, but it only benefited a select few, who had the ability to buy all the resources needed. However, the revolution led to negative environmental impact, which included increased pollution and the breeding of resistant strains of insects, leading to increased dependence of insecticides. Another environmental factor discussed during the period was the development of large dams for electricity generation. This only served the rich few, while it displaced the poor. In addition, it had negative consequences, such as increased flooding. A third environmental issue discussed concerned forests. People depend on forests for their food and fuel. Some people have chosen to commercialize on this, and they have cut down trees for sale. Other people have cut down some species and replaced them with others, leading to monoculture. The Chipko movement was formed with the intention of conserving forests (Stein, 2010).
The second most significant factor in this era is the society. There has been an increase in the country’s population, and this has affected the environment. It has led to an increase in demand for food required to feed the population. In turn, this has encouraged people to depend on the modern and scientific methods of food production to increase their yields. Another critical issue discussed under this factor concerns women’s place within the society. Women have always had the second position in the society. They are not given equal rights in life. They have low literacy levels, and they do not have much power in life. Many people do not want to have female children, and this has led them to practice female infanticide. They have been able to do this because of the law, which makes it legal to procure abortions, and because of technology, which has enabled them to know the sex of the child early on, in the pregnancy.
These factors would have affected people’s lives in a major way. The people suffer whenever there are floods, and they have to move away from their homes. They also suffer whenever there is drought, and the river does not have enough water for the high population. The environmental problems are a cause of concern, especially because they have increased suffering in people’s lives. The water shortages in some areas of India have compelled people to look for solutions. People are looking for local solutions such as building dams to capture the rainwater during the monsoon season (Miller, 2012). They use the water for improving their environment, farming, drinking, and for domestic use. They are looking for ways of improving water usage, such as the use of drip irrigation, as a way of conserving water.
If I were to write a historical novel, I would look for a wise and discerning character, with enough courage to face the people and tell them the truth. The character would be wise enough to see the consequences of increasing food production while reducing water shortages. This character would be able to discern the consequences of using this form of agriculture. The character would also be bold, with enough courage to face the people and warn them about their actions. He or she would be discerning and would know the best way to approach people. I think that my character would be a woman because women are normally able to perceive some issues better compared to men. Women are concerned about their families, and they are bold enough to take a stand when they see their families in danger. I would choose a middle class woman who is educated. Such a woman is in a position to speak to both high caste and low caste people. I would choose a Hindu because Hindus are the majority in the regions. The issues that are happened in the region and those that are continuing to happen are affecting the Hindus.
Miller, J. (2012). Facing water shortages, Indian farmers dig in. Retrieved from http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/food-9-billion/facing-water-shortages-indian-farmers-dig
Stein, B. (2010). A history of India, 2ed. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons