During the past two deca¬des there has been a greater emphasis on the in-depth study of ‘regional history’. It has been observed that the general tendencies in history apparently found over a vast geo-political reality take differ¬ent forms in diverse situations. Like most other regions, Gujarat assumes some peculiar features which are reflected throughout its history. Being a coastal area, it has been open to the outer world for centuries—mainly for merc¬antile transactions.


This book is one of the pro¬ducts of a two-year travail undertaken by a committed European socialist social his¬torian to understand trade unionism among Nigerian port and dock workers and to interpret its implications for them. With disarming frank¬ness, the author reminds us of ‘the 150-year old tradition in the literature on the working class which holds that socia¬lism is necessary in order to overcome capitalist exploita¬tion, oppression, anarchy and waste’ and that ‘the force to bring about the overthrow of capitalism is the working class’.


Mushirul Hasan’s edited, volume deals with the 47 years before Independence in which there was an upsurge of poli¬tical activity both in the Hindu and Muslim communities. This series of nineteen articles deals with two correlated develop¬ments over this period, the politicization of the Muslims through the Khilafat move¬ment which was pegged on a pan-Islamic concept —the reinstatement of the Turkish Khalif, a titular custodian and defender of Islamic holy places after his displacement by the British in 1919—and on communalism and its political usage.


With a Newground publi¬cation, there is no need for the embarrassed wariness with which one normally confronts the Slim First Collection. Newground is a group of young poet-publishers who are careful about what they com¬mit to print. Like other poets they have published (Santan Rodrigues, Eunice de Souza, Saleem Peeradina), Manohar Shetty makes poems seriously, and has honed away at his productions for six years before offering up this spare collection.

Political Economy of Capital Accumulation

The book under review undertakes and accomplishes the daunting task of laying bare the relationship between the capitalist class and the state in Independent India and its consequences for the specific trajectory of capital accumulation that emerged. The task is challenging as the state-capital relationship is often made invisible through laws and customs and obfuscated with the aid of faulty or irrelevant economic logic. Adam Smith wrote in The Wealth of Nations as early as in 1776: We rarely hear […] of the combinations of masters, though frequently of those of workmen.

Networking Dissent

Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protests by Zeynep Tufekci is a brilliant account of the organization, mobilization and spread of dissent in a digital age. The over 275-page description of protests in the ‘networked public sphere’(p. 19) is a riveting account of the role of the internet in movements ranging from the Zapatista uprisings in Mexico, the Arab Spring and the Occupy movement in New York.