Should one judge a book by its cover? By its title? Indeed, one should not and I would hasten to speak out against such a superficial and disrespectful attitude towards books and the great effort that it takes to produce them.
When the dowager Maharani of Beri, my god-daughter’s grandmother, visited me for the first time, she brought me a long, narrow pen box, decorated with the curvy exfoliated scrolls characteristic of Kutchi silver.
This book has been several years in the making. Archiving and selecting the photographs by Richard Bartholomew which were exhibited recently at Photo Ink Gallery, New Delhi, must have been an arduous job, since Richard would not ever have even thought of exhibiting them.
The title of this book is extremely apt. As you thumb through this book, you can glimpse the sombre grandeur of the ruins of an imperial empire at Hampi. It is up to the reader whether he/she sees the splendour in the ruins or the ruins of what was once the splendour of Vijayanagar.
The increasing enrollment of girls in school during the past two decades has been accompanied by a less discussed but not insignificant change in the landscape of schooling in South Asia, i.e. the increased feminization of the teaching profession.
Influenced by the works of David Gellner and Eric Hirsch’s Inside Organizations at Work (Oxford, 2001), Cris Shore and Susan Wright’s The Anthropology of Policy: Critical Perspectives on Governance and Power (Routledge, 1997), and Susan Wright’s Anthropology of Organizations (Routledge, 1994), the editorial expedition of Devi Sridhar’s Anthropologists Inside Organizations…
As a commemorative volume, Tracing an Indian Diaspora: Contexts, Memories, Representations celebrates the first ten years of the existence of the Centre for the Study of Indian Diaspora (CSID), Hyderabad and the annual Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, held at Hyderabad in January 2006.
The rugged mountainous region straddling the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan have, for many centuries, produced large flows of emigration. Men (there were almost exclusively male migrants) variously described as ‘Afghans’, Pakhtuns’, ‘Pathans’ and ‘Rohillas’, speaking dialects today such as ‘Pashto’, have made their way in significant numbers into northern India, Arabia and beyond.
The book is, both a challenging and an exciting preposition, challenging, because it brings together the intellectual initiatives of the nineteen contributors drawn from different social sciences disciplines, working on diverse crime themes, in pre-colonial, colonial and postcolonial time-frame in one large volume; and exciting, because it endeavours to run the two thought streams, namely, human rights and criminology in almost all the essays.
The book under review is a modified version of the author’s Ph.D. thesis submitted in 1997, and has taken a full decade to appear in print. The author, far from being distressed at this delay, is actually ‘glad’ that it ‘has taken so much time to appear as a book’. He notes in the preface,
Asubstantive body of scholarly writings, especially from femi-nists, has contributed significantly to the debate on personal laws and the Uniform Civil Code (henceforth UCC) in South Asia.
This is a timely volume of essays, significant in the context of the present times of unprecedented turmoil and a stealthy erosion of the rights and liberties of an ever-increasing majority, who as the editor rightly points out, continue to be rendered ‘rightless’, even amidst an ever-expanding range of human rights instruments and laws.
The subtitle of this book encapsulates its contents. Future historians will undoubtedly judge the eight year long George W. Bush era harshly as being America’s wasted years. Following 9/11, the responsibility for bombing the World Trade Centre towers in New York was affixed on Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda organization hiding in Afghanistan.
Books on Saudi Arabia have appeared in three distinct waves. The first wave sought to explore and understand the mysterious Saudi world. Harry St. John Philby represents the first wave.
A lot has been written and discussed about the linkage between religion and politics. The Iranian Revolution of the late 1970s in a way epitomized such a relationship. Omid Safi, who grew up in Iran during the revolutionary days and whose family later shifted to the United States, looks at the ideological and political aspects of Islam in the Saljuq era Iran of the eleventh and twelfth centuries.
The Centre for West Asian Studies was set up in the Jamia Millia Islamia in 2005. The Director of the Centre, Rajendra M. Abhyankar, has pointed out in his ‘Introduction’ that the Centre’s area of study is much larger than West Asia, and includes the Horn of Africa, Central Asia, Iran and Turkey.
In Asian Voices in a Postcolonial Age, Susan Bayly presents a perspective on the two countries, Vietnam and India, with a focus on the former, as India primarily steps into her narrative from a comparative vantage point.
Air Marshal Asghar Khan (retd.) has written extensively about the political developments in Pakistan since its inception in 1947. He had the advantage of a ringside view of history and was himself a participant in many of those developments. He is liberal and broadminded in his outlook.
The 26/11 terrorists attack in Mumbai witnessed among other things, a deluge of voices criticizing the Indian media for its coverage of the terror attack. The media was particularly slammed for sensationalizing the news through live coverage of the attacks on the Taj and Oberoi Trident hotels and for creating, if not reflecting, a (public) mood, of warmongering and most importantly, for not questioning the Indian government’s theory of Pakistan’s involvement in the terror attack. In any given situation, the media is the main source of information and therefore, ‘objective journalism’ is demanded, or so it has been argued.
The book Bhutan, a rich pictorial depiction of Bhutan’s history and culture by Lekha Singh is an excellent presentation of the country’s identity. This richness is reflected vividly in the brilliant photographs.