Manna Dey. Translated from Bengali by Sarbani Putatunda

Manna Dey is a legend in Hindi Film Music. The only surviving male singer of the golden era of Hindi Film music, he started his playback career way back in 1942. Memoirs of such a distinguished artiste are bound to be an important addition to the history of this stream, as well as a goldmine of anecdotal information.

Reviewed by: Asad ur Rahman Kidwai

Once in a while you come across a book that you need to mull over, savour, read in instalments in order to derive maximum pleasure and benefit, go back and forth over, and let sink into your soul. This is one such book, a born classic.

Reviewed by: G.J.V. Prasad
Imtiaz Dharker

This is Imtiaz Dharker’s fourth volume of poetry. All her books carry her trade mark sketches, as aesthetic, striking, and at times as searing as her poems. One can but stand on the sidelines and admire such wealth of talent. She started sensationally with Purdah (1989), her first volume: Purdah is a kind of safety.

Reviewed by: Keki N. Daruwalla
Hari Kunzru

There is something about mandatory family jollifications that brings out the worst in one. Chris Carver, in Hari Kunzru’s third novel My Revolutions chooses Christmas lunch to tell his family that he is a Communist, that he was leaving the London School of Economics to which he had gained admission,

Reviewed by: Eunice de Souza
Neera Kapur-Dromsom

In 1898, when the sun never set on the British Empire, Kirparam, young and penniless, left his village on the Jhelum to end up, almost accidentally, in Kenya. (Tana is a river in Kenya.) There were thousands of men like him in India

Reviewed by: Kiran Doshi
Karen Isaksen Leonard

The book is a rich multi-site ethnography that spans continents, tracing histories and movements of people of Hyderabadi origin. The fieldwork was done over a period of ten years from 1990 to 2000 in Hyderabad, the United Kingdom,

Reviewed by: Aparna Rayaprol
Iqtidar Husain Siddiqui

Authority and Kingship under the Sultans of Delhi is rather complex in the sense that it begins on a promising note but does not achieve all. Reinforcing the thesis of centralization, the main crux of the argument—the Sultanate represented a centralized polity that was further embarked upon with a vengeance in the sixteenth century

Reviewed by: Meena Bhargava
Prathama Banerjee

Prathama Banerjee’s rigorously argued book Politics of Time is both a meditation on questions central to contemporary theoretical concerns—namely modernity, subjectivity and agency—as also an exegesis on the colonial Bengali preoccupation with the past.

Reviewed by: G. Arunima
K.N. Panikkar

This selection of K.N. Panikkar’s articles published between 1976 and 2005 not only brings together in one place, the writings of a major modern Indian social historian, but also serves as a historiographical record of the changing concerns of Marxist social history over the last three decades.

Reviewed by: R. Gopinath
A.R. Kulkarni

Professor A.R. Kulkarni is the veritable doyen of Maratha history today. His research career began in the 1950s and the thesis that became (in English) Maharashtra in the Age of Shivaji (1969) was actually submitted in 1960.

Reviewed by: Sumit Guha
Karen E. Lovaas and Mercilee M. Jenkins

The bitter resistance to Government’s attempt to introduce an adolescent education programme is symptomatic of the need to control and domesticate sexuality cordoning it off into the haven of community and tradition secure from the whirlwinds of globalizing influences.

Reviewed by: Vasanth Kannabiran
V.R. Raghavan

Two decades ago governments looked askance, with suspicion or even with downright hostility at any attempt to introduce non-traditional security concepts into the national agenda; this was especially so in regard to the efforts of academics, think-tanks and NGO’s, which had begun around that time.

Reviewed by: I.P. Khosla
Prakash Karat

John Kenneth Galbraith once said, ‘Under capitalism, man exploits man; under communism, it’s just the opposite’. The capitalism versus communism debate is as old as politics itself. In India, it much precedes independence from British rule.

Reviewed by: Swapna Kona
Judith Butler & Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak

If the state is what ‘binds’, it is also clearly what can and does unbind. And if the state binds in the name of the nation, conjuring a certain version of the nation forcibly, if not powerfully, then it also unbinds, releases, expels, banishes

Reviewed by: Rohini Rangachari
Sevanti Ninan

Where Robin Jeffrey’s pioneering study—India’s Newspaper Revolution, left off, Sevanti Ninan’s Headlines from the Heartland, picks up the discursive narrative of the explosion of print capitalism in what was once the lagging Hindi language belt

Reviewed by: Rita Manchanda
Jyotirmaya Sharma

Terrifying Vision is a slim little book on the ideas of the most visible ideologue of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. Its author had earlier explored and written on the world and moods of four well-known makers of the Hindutva ideology (Hindutva: Exploring the Idea of Hindu Nationalism (2003).

Reviewed by: B.Surendra Rao
Leela Fernandes

India has been in the thick of a revolution of rising expectations, visible more sharply for more than two decades. I believe that the new middle class, as is generally defined, is the by-product of high expectations thrown up by changing domestic opportunities

Reviewed by: Hari Jaisingh