I seriously need to brush up my knowledge of Indian history so I am taking the plunge into a Indian history binge.
There are 3 books part of this binge and given their nature I am giving myself an outward deadline of August. This also means that book reviews are going to be few and far between in my blog. You’ll understand why after going through the book details below.
1. India’s Struggle for Independence by Bipan Chandra
No. of pages – 657
“This is the first major study to examine every one of the varied strands of the epic struggle individually and collectively and present it in a new and coherent narrative and analytical framework. Basing themselves on oral and other primary sources and years of research, the authors take the reader through every step of the independence struggle from the abortive Revolt of 1857 to the final victory of 1947. More important while incorporating existing historiographical advances, the book evolves a new and lucid view of the history of the period which will endure.”
2. India since Independence by Bipan Chandra
No. of pages – 788
“A thorough and incisive introduction to contemporary India The story of the forging of India, the world’s largest democracy, is a rich and inspiring one. This volume, a sequel to the best-selling India’s Struggle for Independence, analyses the challenges India has faced and the successes it has achieved, in the light of its colonial legacy and century-long struggle for freedom. The book describes how the Constitution was framed, as also how the Nehruvian political and economic agenda and basics of foreign policy were evolved and developed. It dwells on the consolidation of the nation, examining contentious issues like party politics in the Centre and the states, the Punjab problem, and anti-caste politics and untouchability. This revised edition offers a scathing analysis of the growth of communalism in India and the use of state power in furthering its cause. It also documents the fall of the National Democratic Alliance in the 2004 General Elections, the United Progressive Alliance’s subsequent rise to power and the Indo-US Nuclear Deal that served to unravel the political consensus at the centre. Apart from detailed analyses of Indian economic reforms since 1991 and wide-ranging land reforms and the Green Revolution, this new edition includes an overview of the Indian economy in the new millennium. These, along with objective assessments of Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Jayaprakash Narayan, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Rajiv Gandhi, Vishwanath Pratap Singh, Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Manmohan Singh, constitute a remarkable overview of a nation on the move.”
3. India after Gandhi by Ramachandra Guha
No. of pages – 893
“A magisterial account of the pains, the struggles, the humiliations, and the glories of the world’s largest and least likely democracy, Ramachandra Guha’s India After Gandhi is a breathtaking chronicle of the brutal conflicts that have rocked a giant nation and the extraordinary factors that have held it together. An intricately researched and elegantly written epic history peopled with larger-than-life characters, it is the work of a major scholar at the peak of his abilities..”
That comes to a grand total of 2338 pages ! Now you know why I am so liberal with my deadlines here. 🙂
Is anyone out there crazy enough to take this binge with me ? 😉
(images and summaries source: Goodreads)