Interesting People, Uninteresting Thoughts
Parsa Venkateshwar Rao Jr
----------- by B.G. Verghese Penguin/Viking, New Delhi, 2006, 349 pp., 595
June 2006, volume 30, No 6

The one thing that strikes the reader as he closes the book is: Interesting people, uninteresting thoughts. The section, “About the Authors” makes for more interesting reading than the book itself. This is a puzzling thing, apart from being an obvious paradox. And it needs some explanation. The Stephanians who have contributed to this 125th St. Stephens College anniversary issue are successful bureaucrats, diplomats, journalists, politicians, academics. They are examples of men and women of the world of whom the college can justifiably be proud. But it does not follow that they have anything profound or original or meaningful to say about the condition of India or about its future. The underlying assumption of the book is precisely that: That Stephanians who have been successful in various walks of life, and who have occupied influential positions in the pecking order have something to say about the country. These are the people who have handled the affairs of the country at different vantage points.

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