The Tribune - Spectrum

Sunday, March 30, 2003

Man-made disaster with warlike consequences
Roopinder Singh
Exposure: Portrait of a Corporate Crime
by Raghu Rai. Introduction by Anil Sharma. Greenpeace International, Amsterdam. Price not stated.

T a time when "impressive" images of war are beamed to billions of television sets the world over, a reality check is in order. War does bring destruction, death and disrupts the social order whenever it takes place. War is bad, and it has horrible consequences. It is interesting that the organisation that has published Exposure is also at the forefront of aggressively opposing war. In fact, Greenpeace has sponsored a "Coalition of the UNwilling," and is supporting various anti-war protests the world over.

Write view
Sourav, a captain who believes in his boys
Randeep Wadehra

Sourav: a biography
by Gulu Ezekiel. Penguin, N. Delhi. Pages x + 213. Rs 250.

E has oodles of attitude, with that touch of arrogance that riles his critics. He is probably the first Indian cricket captain who is aggressive enough to give the Aussies, Pakistanis and South Africans a taste of their own medicine. Under him, the Indian team looks capable of taking on any challenge. There is an air of self-confidence about the players that reminds one of Kapil’s Devils who won the World Cup two decades ago.

History and conflicting nationalisms
Rumina Sethi

Beyond Nationalist Frames: Relocating Postmodernism, Hindutva, History
by Sumit Sarkar. Permanent Black, Delhi. Pages 265. Rs 550.

UMIT Sarkar’s argument starts with his unease with the major historical assumptions of all times—the ‘single, overwhelmingly predominant, colonial/anti-colonial binary.’ The Left nationalists, Marxist and even the early Subaltern Studies historians recovered the Indian history only through the prism of colonial subjugation and rationalist tendencies.

Hinduism as four thinkers look at it
The Hinduism Omnibus
by Nirad C. Chaudhuri, Madeleine Biardeau, D. F. Pocock and T. N. Madan. Oxford University Press, New Delhi. Pages 340, 189, 187 & 158, respectively. Rs 695.

KNOWING the complexities of various thought processes which have evolved from Hinduism, the publishers have picked up the works of four eminent thinkers — Nirad C. Chaudhuri, Madeleine Biardeau, D. F. Pocock and T. N. Madan. They discuss Hinduism from various angles which could be based on personal experience or could be part of its rich textual tradition or various beliefs and practices.


In the hands of a master puppeteer
Manju Jaidka

The Brainfever Bird
by I. Allan Sealy. London: Picador, 2003. Pages 360. Rs 425.

LLAN Sealy’s last novel, The Everest Hotel, is still fresh in the mind — that elaborate song of the seasons, reminding us that the poetry of the earth is never dead, be it spring or summer, autumn or winter, the minute observations of the myriad forms of life, the falling of the first drop of rain on parched earth, or the crunch of dry autumnal leaves underfoot, or the slightest shiver of a blade of grass in a breeze as soft as an infant’s breath.

Meet the author
“As a writer one has to persevere”
IS sensuous prose, full of rich imagery and poetry, sets I. Allan Sealy’s books apart from the other Indian writers writing in English. His previous book — The Everest Hotel — was a tour de force of evocative descriptions of hills and he was adjudged the master storyteller of quieter climes. However his latest novel, The Brainfever Bird (Picador-India) is set in two bustling metropolitans — Delhi and Moscow. Sealy spoke about his work to Sanjay Austa.


Emerging trends in Indo-Singaporean ties
Himmat Singh Gill
Challenges for India and Singapore
edited by N. N. Vohra. India International Centre and Manohar. Pages 179. Rs 400

T goes to the credit of the Indian foreign policy makers that in concentrating more on India’s neighbours while formulating policies on bilateral and other issues, not only have the two nations concerned benefited, but the whole of the Asian continent has also stood to gain. With the break-up of the Soviet Union, the end of the Cold War, the advent of a unipolar world, and the recent economic resurgence of India, it is time again for mutually beneficial economic relations in Asia.

Scholar who saw it and chronicled it
Parshotam Mehra

Interesting Times: a Twentieth-Century Life
by Eric Hobsbawm.
Penguin, Allen Lane, London. Pages XVI + 448. `A3 15.

EPENDING upon where one is and what one is doing, a denizen of the 21st century may view the past 100 years as one of contention and conflict, of peace and prosperity, of an unprecedented advance in the technological revolution. Of some vague if uncertain emergence of a new world order. Of the birth of a myriad new nations in Africa and Asia.

On foreign capital inflows
G. K. Pandey
Foreign Investment in India
by Chanchal Chopra. Deep & Deep Publications
Pvt. Ltd. Rs 850.

T is an in-depth study of foreign investments in India with all its ramifications. Chanchal Chopra has dealt with this ticklish issue intelligently and cogently. After discussing the pros and cons relating to foreign capital, the author has concluded that in order to accelerate the pace of development the tempo of foreign investment will need to be stepped up. The book presents an emerging scenario in India with regard to different types of foreign capital inflows.

Punjabi literature
Unfolding strange scientific ‘truths’
Jaspal Singh
UNJABI lovers and writers have been agitating for a long time against the language policy of the Punjab government. They feel that it is not sincerely implementing the ‘Language Act’ hence this language is not getting its due patronage from the state which, according to them, is absolutely necessary for the development of a language. What they forget is that as a literary language Punjabi is fully developed to express all kinds of delicate feelings.