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Sunday, December 23, 2001
Books

India in hot pursuit of Europe
Review by Amritjit Singh
The Indian Imagination: Critical Essays on Indian Writing in English.
by K.D. Verma. St. Martin’s Press, New York. Pages xiv + 268. $ 45.00
"THE Indian Imagination" creates a very specific context for a fresh reading of a few selected Indian-English writers like Sri Aurobindo, Mulk Raj Anand, Nissim Ezekiel, Balachandra Rajan, Anita Desai and Arun Joshi. It attempts a reading that views these writers and their texts to be in an intense conversation with the broad intellectual and philosophical traditions of Europe since the 18th century, especially in relation to the European thought on India generally in service of imperialism.

Books
received

Immaterial girl
Review by Barbara Ellen
Madonna
by Andrew Morton, O’Mara Books, London. Pages 256.

A
man I know, not even a journalist, recently had a nightmare about Madonna. He would be interviewing her, think that he had finished, and put away his dictaphone, only for another "Madonna" to pop up and the whole process start up again. By his account, however many times he had thought he had "done" her, Madonna just kept coming back, like some many-headed MTV hydra.

All the great foodies of the past
Review by Kavita Chauhan
Annapurna
by P. Arundhati. Concept Publishing, New Delhi. Pages 108. Rs 200.
THE book under review is a collection of articles written and lectures delivered by the author on different occasions. The title of the book "Annapurna"is very misleading, basically the book is about the life and culture of ancient India. The articles cover a wide range of subjects like nourishment, medicine, ecology, psychology, chemistry and petrology.

 


REJOINDER
More about haiku
Review by N.K. Singh
I
RECENTLY came across the review of my book "Haikus and Sketches" by Vikramdeep Johal. While I appreciate the homework of the reviewer in the classical tradition of Haiku, I wish he had extended his efforts in studying Haiku in its total perspective. He writes more about haikus as he understands it rather than my book under review.

Mulayam, the ununderstood mover of UP politics
Review by Baljit Kang

Mulayam Singh — A Political Biography
by Ram Singh and Anshuman Yadav. Konark Publishers, New Delhi. Pages 219. Rs 300.
HE is a politician whom other politicians and the media would love to forget, but who refuses to go away. Instead, like an obdurate wrestler, squarely beaten but blissfully unmindful of the referee’s verdict, he hangs hopefully around the ring. And just when everyone is agreed on his epitaph, he is back again.

The roots of Jayalalithaa’s politics
Review by Ashutosh Kumar

Ethnicity and Populist Mobilization: Political Parties, Citizens and Democracy in South India
by Narendra Subramanian. Oxford University Press, New Delhi. Rs 250.
AMONG the post-colonial countries India was until recently widely regarded a unique success case in the management of ethnic conflict. This was understandable given the considerable ethnic — cultural diversities and lack of literacy, industrial growth and democratic history — the ingredients of democracy at the time of de-colonisation.

WRITE VIEW
Of identity crisis and Gandhian economics
Review by Randeep Wadehra
Community & Identities
edited by Surinder S. Jodhka. Sage Publications, New Delhi. Pages 269. Rs 300.
THE extent of social stratification in India is mind boggling. Religions and cults. Sects and subsects. Castes and subcastes. A myriad tribal, linguistic and ethnic denominations and groupings. Hierarchies within hierarchies. A truly multihued mosaic that defies imagination.