Over the years, debates on China-India relations have evolved from being just fashionable to becoming ever more rigorous and complex. Driven by the need to develop their special niche, a number of recent studies have begun to focus on examining and highlighting the enormity, complexity, uniqueness and nuanced limitations of this China-India comparative paradigm.
The words and names Orissa, Jagganatha and Chaitanya are synonymous. Prabhat Mukherjee says in the Preface of his book, ‘Chitanya’s influence on the religious history of Orissa was profound. Chaitanya is probably the only Hindu saint who was deified during his lifetime.
This book began in the 1980s and was almost ready in 1991, under the title Indian Nuclear Strategy. Such a book would probably have been a bestseller, suggesting to the Indian public that India had a nuclear strategy in the years when the Prime Minister was famous for his quote that not giving a decision is also a decision.
Strategic thought through the ages has been driven by the need to deal with the future. The safety and well being of kingdoms, monarchies, nation states, regional or global powers, as well as of virtual states like the modern multinational corporations, depended on knowing the future scenarios in which they will function.
Were segregationist USA and British India empires in any sense equivalent? And, with enough in common between them to be viewed in juxtaposition? Gerald Horne’s case, in this slender but revelatory narrative, goes beyond establishing likenesses between the Jim Crow regime and John Bull’s raj.
I.P. Khosla’s book Underdogs End Empires seeks to give an uncommon perspective on international relations(IR), that of the underdog. This perspective developed, as the author explains in the preface, in the 60s and the 70s—the grand period of decolonization—from discussions with diplomatic colleagues from India and from the newly liberated countries, his readings and, of course, from his diplomatic experience in various capitals.
Though of recent origin, political pornography is a well-established literary genre in India today thriving on what Yunus rightly describes as the ‘prevailing mood of our high-minded intellectuals to read gossip.’ What began as a mild stimulant following the news-starved years of Emergency became in the permissive milieu of Janata rule full scale pandering to political prurience.