Skip to main content

Never Say Die: The Swadeshi Movement Strikes Again









Sumit Sarkar


The Swadeshi Movement in Bengal


Widely hailed by historians as the first great and pioneering monograph in Modern Indian History (many maintain it has never been surpassed) Sumit Sarkar's The Swadeshi Movement in Bengal (1973) was unavailable for nearly fifteen years before its republication in a new edition in 2010 by Permanent Black. This was thanks very substantially to the efforts of Tanika Sarkar in obtaining copyright back from the original publisher ... but that's another story (it should feature in Tanika Sarkar's autobiography, if she writes one).


The new Permanent Black edition has been freshly typeset and looks much more elegant than the first edition. It also contains plenty of great new material in the form of a long new preface by Sumit Sarkar reflecting on changes in Indian historiography over the 35 years since he wrote his first major book, as well as two brilliant essays contextualizing and outlining the importance of this book by Neeladri Bhattacharya of JNU and Dipesh Chakrabarty of Chicago.

The hardback having sold out, the paperback is publishing in the summer of 2011 with the beautiful new cover design above (including a rare photo of Sumit Sarkar at the time that he wrote Swadeshi Movement).

This coincides happily with the first paperback printing of Sumit Sarkar and Tanika Sarkar's edited reader in two volumes, Caste and Social Reform in Modern India, which has sold out two hardback printings.

As is well known in the academic world, Sumit Sarkar fell very ill a couple of years back and his survival and wonderful recovery have been something of a miracle. You can say the same for his Swadeshi Movement in Bengal, a book that needs to be read by every student and scholar of Indian history.

Swadeshi Movement: paperback / 506pp / Rs 450 / World rights
Caste and Social Reform: paperback / 940pp in 2 vols / Rs 895 for set of 2 vols / South Asia rights

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

THE GREAT AGRARIAN CONQUEST by NEELADRI BHATTACHARYA

BUY THE PAPERBACK       FROM THE REVIEWS   Review in SOCIAL HISTORY, USA by Benjamin Siegel The Great Agrarian Conquest represents a massive intervention into the contemporary historiography of South Asia, elaborating upon some conventional wisdom but upending a great deal more of it. Readers might well place this book in conversation with works like Ranajit Guha ’ s A Rule of Property for Bengal (1963) and Bernard Cohn ’ s Colonialism and Its Forms of Knowledge (1997), to which The Great Agrarian Conquest owes some preliminary inspiration. Yet what Bhattacharya o ff ers is a wholly original account of the transformation to agrarian colonialism . . .   Few volumes in South Asian history have been more awaited than this monograph, Neeladri Bhattacharya ’ s fi rst. One of the most celebrated mentors and researchers at New Delhi ’ s Jawaharlal Nehru University, Bhattacharya retired in 2017 after a decades-long career. His formal scholarly output, limited to sev

PARTHA CHATTERJEE: THE TRUTHS AND LIES OF NATIONALISM as narrated by Charvak

"While the Covid-19 pandemic was still raging in the autumn of 2020, I found, one evening, placed outside the door of my home in Kolkata, a sealed packet. Apparently, it had been left there sometime during the day. It did not come by post or any of the courier services that usually deliver mail because, if it had, someone would have rung the bell and I was home all day. In fact, the parcel did not bear any seal or inscription except my name and address written in English script in a confident cursive style rarely seen these days. My curiosity was aroused because the package did not look like a piece of junk mail. The thought that it might contain something more sinister did strike my mind – after all, the times were not exactly normal. But something in the look of the packet persuaded me that it should be examined. After dutifully spraying the packet with a disinfectant, I unwrapped it and found, within cardboard covers and neatly tied in red string, what looked like a manuscript

THE BOOK OF INDIAN ESSAYS

Indians have been writing prose for 200 years, and yet when we think of literary prose we think of the novel. The “essay”   brings only the school essay to mind. Those of us who read and write English in India might find it hard to name an essay even by someone like R.K. Narayan as easily as we would one of his novels, say Swami and Friends or The Guide . Our inability to recall essays is largely due to the strange paradox that while the form itself remains invisible, it is everywhere present. The paradox becomes even more strange when we realise that some of our finest writers of English prose  did not write novels at all, they wrote essays. The anthology is an attempt at making what has always been present also permanently visible. Arvind Krishna Mehrotra   • A collection of the finest essays written in English by Indians over the past two hundred years. • The Book of Indian Essays is a wide-ranging historical anthology of the Indian essay in English – the f