Rob Harle

Voices across the Ocean: Poems from Australia &India(Cyberwit, 2014)is third in a series of collaborative anthologies by Rob Harle and Jaydeep Sarangi. The collection brings together 12 national portraits in verse, featuring five Indian and five Australian contemporary poets and a poem each from the editors.

Reviewed by: Usha Kishore
Chandrika Balan

Chandrika Balan’s collection of short stories is a rich addition to the multicultural and multilingual reality of our times.

Reviewed by: Jasbir Jain
Doug Gunnery

This novel is by the well-known academic, the sociologist of middle-class India, Dipankar Gupta. The Crime Writers Festival at Delhi revealed that he had written LTY under the pseudonym of Doug Gunnery.

Reviewed by: G.J.V. Prasad
Bruce King

Bruce King’s Rewriting India charts new grounds in the study of Indian English writing. Any discussion on Indian English writing is bound to fall into the familiar trap of postcolonialism and the writers’ complicity in furthering the imperial discourse.

Reviewed by: Sanju Thomas
Bhagwandass Morwal

Bhagwandas Morwal is one of those rare Hindi writers who have consciously and continuously striven to extend the limits of their socio-creative oeuvre. He had burst on the Hindi literary scene with Kala Pahar and has, over the years, consolidated his position as a novelist with Babal Tere Desh Mein and Ret.

Reviewed by: Anup Beniwal
A.N. Sharma

This is a remarkable story. The author, his wife and daughter (the book has been authored by the father-daughter duo)—all enthusiasts, music lovers, avid collectors are rummaging through a kabadi shop when Abha (wife) stumbles across dusty cartons of cylinders which the shopkeeper tells her are textile yarn winding accessories. They bring the cartons home. Some of the cylinders are labelled and dated.

Reviewed by: Partho Datta
A. Banerjee

Although this is yet another volume on dalit writing which adds to the burgeoning dalit discourse, it is welcome because dalit literature constitutes an important segment of postmodern literature in India in particular and is a prominent literary site in the South Asian context in general.

Reviewed by: A. Gangatharan
Yogendra Singh

‘Nearly every book’, George Orwell famously wrote in 1946, ‘is capable of arousing passionate feeling’—feeling which may range from ‘passionate dislike’ to equally passionate admiration—in the mind of the reader (George Packer [Comp.] George Orwell: Critical Essays, London, 2009, p. 290).

Reviewed by: Nabanipa Bhattacharjee
Jay Satia

Innovations in Maternal Health: Case Studies from India (2014) edited by a team of researchers from the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) describes a series of interventions which aim to improve maternal health among some of India’s poorest communities.

Reviewed by: Ramila Bisht
Pallavi Aiyar

Indians who travel abroad or migrate internationally rarely write about the societies they intimately encounter and adopt as ‘home’. Contrastively, from the time of the colonial era, western writers have produced a copious and authoritative body of travelogues, fiction, and scholarship on the Indian subcontinent.

Reviewed by: Shalini Grover
Jiehong Zhou and Shaosheng Jin

In the post-economic reform era the Chinese society has witnessed the emergence of newly rich class enjoying the benefits of economic prosperity. There is growing awareness over delivery of services, quality of products, protection of legal rights, i.e., based on the weiquan movement of early 2000s, as argued by Jonathan Benney (2013) in his celebrated work Defending Rights in Contemporary China.

Reviewed by: Abhishek Pratap Singh
Clarinda Still

S lavoj Zizek while discussing his new work at LSE recently, emphatically un derlines the ‘Universalism of Capitalism’ and further states that at the level of economy ‘capitalism has triumphed worldwide’ in contemporary times. For Zizek ‘the mask of cultural diversity today is sustained by the actual universalism of global capital’.

Reviewed by: Moggalan Bharti
Edward Simpson

On the morning of January 26, 2001 when India was celebrating the 52nd Republic Day, a great tragedy befell Gujarat. As the earthquake struck, around 14,000 people died, houses fell into rubble, hundreds of villages ‘totally collapsed’ and oil spill was reported. The most affected areas of Gujarat were Kutch, Bhuj and Anjar.

Reviewed by: Abhay Kumar
Rina Agarwala

Will there be workers organizing in neo-liberal times? Yes, workers will be organizing in a new liberal fashion! Rina Agarwala’s book Informal Labour, Formal Politics, and Dignified Discontent in India suggests that workers in the informal sector in India are successfully negotiating their livelihood demands taking advantage of intensely competitive politics particularly at the State level.

Reviewed by: Parimal Maya Sudhakar
Ishita Bannerjee-Dube

One does not envy the lot of an academic taking on the task of writing a comprehensive history of Modern India, balancing both events and interpretations. First, there is the question of the audience. Is the book geared towards a casual, general reader looking for an informed but flowing narrative? Is it going to serve the needs of the ‘average’ undergraduate student? Or is it a go-to book for researchers and teachers?

Reviewed by: Devika Sethi
Christopher S. Chivvis

Christopher Chivvis is the quintessential policy wonk having rotated in and out of government and the academia, so typical of the career profile of public intellectuals in the United States. Given that he needs the government for access to information and the policy high table, as much as the government needs his brains, it is inevitable that he would write up a favourable account of the US role in toppling Gaddafi.

Reviewed by: Ali Ahmed
Amalendu Das Gupta

It is heartening that after a gap of a decade and a half, Amalendu Guha’s Medieval and Early Colonial Assam: Society, Polity, Economy is once again available in bookshops. The twelve chapters originally published as articles between the 1960s and 1980s, were compiled and published as a book in 1991.

Reviewed by: Manjeet Baruah
Udayon Misra

India’s North East region has offered many paradoxes for observers over the years, thus emerging as a major field of research.

Reviewed by: Kaustubh Deka
Harish Khare

Journalists have been the first off the block in coming out with books on the 2014 Lok Sabha election. Close on the heels of Rajdeep Sardesai’s 2014: The Election That Changed India comes a book by another senior journalist, Harish Khare, titled How Modi Won It: Notes from the 2014 Election.

Reviewed by: Shreyas Sardesai
A. Raghurama Raju

As an individual greatly enthused by the life and labours of Swami Vivekananda, this is a book that I have eagerly awaited and indeed, it is doubly rewarding that I should now also be among its reviewers.

Reviewed by: Amiya P. Sen
Vasanthi Srinivasan

A political science professor at the University of Hyderabad, Vasanthi Srinivasan is clearly also at home in other disciplines such as philosophy, religion and history.

Reviewed by: Rajmohan Gandhi