March 3, 2002
a modernity gone haywire
A Hundred Encounters
by Sham Lal. Rupa & Co., New Delhi. Pages 536+xiv. Rs 395.
East is East, West is West and never the twain shall meet’’,
proclaimed Kipling. Much before satellite television invaded our
homes. Much before Sham Lal became a columnist. However, while
television — that chewing gum for the eyes and sleeping pill for
the intellect— has brought the West closer by bombarding us with
inane, feel-good images, Sham Lal has done the job creatively by
presenting profound, even disturbing ideas.
a sacred experience come alive with words
Sacred Waters a pilgrimage to the many sources of the Ganga
by Stephen Alter.
waters of the sky or those that flow,Those that are dug out or those
that arise by themselves, Those pure and clear waters that seek the
ocean As their goal-let the waters, who are goddesses, help me here
and now— Rig Veda.
gripping tale well told
Circles of Silence, An
Indian Love Story,
by Preeti Singh, published by Hodder and Stoughton, pages 503,
you finish doing double-takes over the cover of the book, which
could easily mislead you into thinking that it’s a Gulshan Nanda
novel rather than a book written by an editor of the Oxford
University Press, New Delhi, and get your teeth into the book, you
find that its not bad at all.