May book: India After Gandhi (Part 1 to 3)

India After Gandhi: The History of World's Largest democracy
By Ramachandra Guha

Since it is a very big book, we will be reading part 1 to 3 in May, part 4 and 5 in June.


About the Book:
Born against a background of privation and civil war, divided along lines of caste, class, language and religion, independent India emerged, somehow, as a united and democratic country. Ramachandra Guha’s hugely acclaimed book tells the full story - the pain and the struggle, the humiliations and the glories - of the world’s largest and least likely democracy. While India is sometimes the most exasperating country in the world, it is also the most interesting. Ramachandra Guha writes compellingly of the myriad protests and conflicts that have peppered the history of free India. Moving between history and biography, the story of modern India is peopled with extraordinary characters. Guha gives fresh insights on the lives and public careers of those longserving Prime Ministers, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi. But the book also writes with feeling and sensitivity about lesser known (though not necessarily less important) Indians - peasants, tribals, women, workers and musicians. Massively researched and elegantly written, India After Gandhi is a remarkable account of India’s rebirth, and a work already hailed as a masterpiece of single volume history.


About the Author
Ramachandra Guha is an author and columnist based in Bangalore. Born in Dehradun in 1958, he studied at St.Stephen’s College, the Delhi School of Economics, and the Indian Institute of Management at Kolkata, where he wrote a doctoral thesis on the history and prehistory of the Chipko movement. Now a full-time writer, he has previously taught at the universities of Yale and Stanford, held the Arné Naess Chair at the University of Oslo, and been the Sundaraja Visiting Professor at the Indian Institute of Science. In 2011-2 he will occupy the prestigious Phillipe Roman Chair in History and International Affairs at the London School of Economics.

Guha’s books include a pioneering environmental history, The Unquiet Woods (Oxford University Press, 1989); Savaging the Civilized (University of Chicago Press, 1999), A life of the anthropologist-activist Verrier Elwin which the Times Literary Supplement called the ‘best biography by an Indian for many years’, an award-winning social history of cricket, A Corner of a Foreign Field (Picador), and India after Gandhi (Picador, 2007), a widely discussed (and also award-winning) history of India since independence. He is now working on a book on Mohandas Gandhi’s years in South Africa. Aside from his scholarly work, Guha writes regularly on social and political issues for the general public. Between 1997 and 2009 he wrote a fortnightly column for The Hindu, India’s national newspaper. He now writes columns in The Telegraph and the Hindustan Times, with these articles appearing in translation in other Indian newspapers (such as Hindustan, Dainik Bhaskar, Prajavani, and Andhra Jyoti). Guha’s awards include the Leopold-Hidy Prize of the American Society of Environmental History, the Daily Telegraph/Cricket Society prize, the R. K. Narayan Prize, and the Padma Bhushan. The New York Times has referred to him as ‘perhaps the best among India’s non fiction writers’; Time Magazine has called him ‘Indian democracy’s preeminent chronicler’.

 

Wikipedia page

Hindu review

Flipkart Link

 

 

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  • Shankar Prasad

    Good but I will reserve my comments till I finish the book over the weekend (?)

    May 16, 2013

  • Pabitra Martha

    This was a first of a kind for me and it was wonderful to meet people from varied background but also from various age groups. I loved it.

    May 15, 2013

  • Kp Suresh

    Very good discussions,nice small group

    May 15, 2013

  • Kavita

    IMP ANNOUNCEMENT!! We just found out that the Antz Cafe is being renovated (of all days - they started today!!) so we have shifted our meeting location to the COSTA COFFEE on 12th Main in Indiranagar itself -- Landmark: Sony World Junction on 100ft and 12th Main -- if you are coming from Domlur, you must take an immediate right just before the Sony World showroom at the junction....call me at [masked] in case you need help/directions/more info!!

    2 · May 15, 2013

  • Kavita

    Folks - If anyone needs a copy of the book, please contact me so I can make arrangements to send it to you! (for free)

    April 2, 2013

    • Kavita

      @Shankar - I have just sent you an email. pls check ur inbox!

      May 15, 2013

    • Shankar Prasad

      Hey thanks, will glance it and read as much as possible.

      May 15, 2013

  • flyin

    Lovely topic, this will be my first meetup, how long will the meetups be usually?

    1 · May 7, 2013

    • Kavita

      Our meetups usually last at least 2 hours so we can have a good discussion and take turns explaining our views on the reading material -- please do read some part of the book (for this meet, we are only discussing Parts 1, 2 and 3 of the book) - hope to see you tomorrow!

      May 14, 2013

    • flyin

      Thanks, will try grabbing the book from the nearest library! :)

      May 14, 2013

  • arvind batra

    Dear friends,

    I hope you have all read the book by now and are all geared up for tomorrow's discussion. I am near the end of part 3 and have thoroughly enjoyed reading the book. I just wish i had read about our history earlier in my life, but as they say : Better Late Than Never. I am looking forward to see you all at tomorrow's meetup. In case you have any queries, feel free to reach out to me at my cell: Eight Eight Six One Two Zero One Three Eight One.
    We will be meeting at Ants Cafe in Indiranagar at 7 pm. Please be on time.

    Regards,
    arvind

    1 · May 14, 2013

  • Shankar Prasad

    I would like to attend this interaction my contact mail id is [masked]

    1 · May 14, 2013

  • Rohit Mishra

    I have read the book once. Looking to read it again and discuss the book.

    1 · April 11, 2013

  • arvind batra

    Dear RSVPers, A quick note: Please read atleast 20% of the book before coming for the meetup to get the most out of this meetup and also as a token of respect to others who have read the book. Please share your observations from the book that you find interesting (could be either positive or negative).
    This is a serious book club and we want to have a meaningful and productive discussion about the book. Our aim is to make the experience insightful and rewarding to all the attendees. If you can share more resources around the book, (reviews, articles, documentaries etc), it would be even better.

    1 · April 2, 2013

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