The book under review pro¬vides a series of interesting vignettes on witchcraft in Western India, mainly the coastal region stretching through Maharashtra, Goa, Kerala and Karnataka. Kapur, a journalist by profession, undertook investigative visits to various places in this region during 1978. For her it must have been a journey of adven¬ture—exciting as well as appalling.
With the contemporary infor¬mation explosion, and in view of the growth of literacy rates around the world, the organization and dissemination of knowledge are going to be the basic functions of information scientists and librarians in the years to come. These person¬nel, otherwise generally well trained in the organi-zation of knowledge, have yet to bridge the gap between the inform¬ation in store and its ideal use by the users.
Economics thrives on con¬troversies. The most impor¬tant of them all are related to the process of capital accu¬mulation. Inevitably the questions boil down to the theoretical framework of ana¬lysis but not without some confusion and bloodshed. With the increasing diversity of views it becomes difficult to take stock of the contributions to theories of growth and accumulation.
In 1979, when the world ex¬perienced the second oil shock, the World Energy Conference set up an Oil Substitution Task Force (OSTF) with the following objectives: (i) to identify and assess the techno¬logical, economic and other factors affecting the substitu¬tion of oil by other energy sources; (ii) to quantify the most likely amount of substi¬tution by making specific as-sumptions of price and avail¬ability of crude oil; and (iii) to study the sensitivity of oil sub¬stitution to changes in prices and availability of crude oil.
The title of the book, its pre¬face, and its foreword (written by Professor V. Ramalingaswami), hold out a promise that is un¬fortunately not fulfilled in the text: At a charitable estimate, there are no more than thirty pages in this book which are concerned with what is supposed to be the primary focus of the work.
The ‘publish or perish’ syn¬drome which is increasingly becoming the most vexed question in the academic life of the United States seems to have invaded India also. Although it is still not very clear in this country whether the number of publications of an individual scholar necess¬arily promotes his professional prospects (the growth of ‘trade unionism’ among teachers in the university system running rather counter to this develop¬ment), the fact that he appears to believe so gives credence to this formulation.
This is a study of the hermi¬tage movement in Sinhalese Buddhism. The movement goes back to a hundred years, in the course of which different at-tempts have been made to revive the tradition of forest monks dedicated to the solitary life, to putting Buddhist pre¬cepts into practice, and to re¬forming the sangha attached to Buddhist temples.
Literature on peasantry and peasant revolts in India has grown steadily over the past fifteen years or so. Although quantitatively this development has been impres¬sive, this body of literature has only a few works which could be pointed out as noteworthy contributions in terms of quality as well as originality of new analytical insights. Since 1981 Guha has started editing a series of Subaltern Studies, of which two volumes are already out.
‘Rape and domestic violence are forms of punishment’, says the author,
for women who have step¬ped out of line, and attempts to re-impose patriarchal dis¬cipline in a society which is no longer patriarchal.
Prehistoric rock painting is one of the more recent arrivals on the Indian archaeo¬logical scene. The present work attempts to synthesize the available information and present a composite picture. The author has visited most of the sites and also had the advantage, as he mentions, of intensive discussions with scholars like Mathapal, Misra and Wakankar who have been active in this particular field for quite some time now.
We love the city of our birth for the same reason for which we hate it. And we hate it precisely because it is the city of our birth. I was born in Delhi and I hope I never grow so indifferent towards it as to come to love it.
This is Shashi Deshpande’s first novel, but it has been published after two others, The Dark Holds No Terrors and Come Up and be Dead which is a mystery thriller. For a reader who is familiar with The Dark Holds No Terrors, this new novel is of interest as having a similar theme and similar strengths but containing flaws which the author had obvi¬ously managed to outgrow by the time she wrote The Dark.
In the last two lines of Mahapatra’s final poem (‘In the Fields of Desolate Rice’) he tells us:
In the end
I come back to the day and to the rain.
This publication is part of the Oxford Series on India-China Studies which aims to develop interdisciplinary research on historical and contemporary relations between the two countries. In so far as the effort is to bring to light scholarship beyond the current preoccupation with geopolitical issues, Thakur Gadhadhar Singh’s self-published travelogue from 1902 seems, at first glance, an excellent choice.
Tariq Khosa, a former Director General of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in Pakistan, grabbed the attention of the Indian media for a brief moment for an article he wrote in the Dawn newspaper on 3 August 2015 on the Mumbai attacks trial. In that article he pointed out how the investigations in Pakistan had been able to find strong evidence that the Mumbai attacks were planned and launched from Pakistani soil…
Over the years, the different aspects of the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan and its fallout on Pakistan and the wider world have been discussed threadbare. Yet, books are being written on it and the book under review is one among such books published in 2017. As the title of the book indicates, the author of this book Imrana Begum discusses the various dimensions of the intervention of the erstwhile Soviet Union in Afghanistan and its multiple impacts on Pakistan.
Under the assault of social media, attention spans have contracted somewhat. But that is not any reason to worry. There are short introductions available to catch up on weighty matters, such as in the case of national security. These help in gaining a working understanding of issues outside a reader’s usual beat and on the quick, being small handbooks intended unambitiously as ‘introduction’.
The book under review, Another South Asia! orbits around a simple but ambiguous premise of what South Asia is. While the answer to this question varies academically, politically and discursively, Dev Nath Pathak, through this book, has tried to provide an alternative conceptualization or imagination of this region.
In his memoir Neighbours in Arms, the former U.S. senator, Larry Pressler, advances a simple theme: ‘India’s democratic government [and] location … make it a natural … geopolitical ally. We should decisively choose India … We must downgrade Pakistan and treat it as it is: an irresponsible, dishonest, rogue state’ (pp. 53–54). His book focuses on his legislative efforts in the eighties and Pressler claims that if a law bearing his name
In 2006, AC Grayling, a well known and respected British philosopher stirred up a lot of discussion with his book Among the Dead Cities: Was the Allied Bombing of Civilians in World War Two a Necessity or a Crime? The book delved into the aerial bombing of German cities by the British and the Americans. Grayling termed the bombing as a crime against humanity as he saw it as causing disproportionate harm to civilians, being militarily ineffective in defeating the Axis Powers.