In Partitions of the Heart: Unmaking the Idea of India, human rights and peace worker Harsh Mander takes stock of whether the republic has upheld the values it set out to achieve and offers painful, unsparing insight into the contours of hate violence. Through vivid stories from his own work, Mander shows that hate speech, communal propaganda and vigilante violence are mounting a fearsome climate of dread, that targeted crime is systematically fracturing our community, and that the damage to the country’s social fabric may be irreparable. At the same time, he argues that hate can indeed be fought, but only with solidarity, reconciliation and love, and when all of these are founded on fairness.
‘At last a book that turns a powerful searchlight on the evil tide of hatred and violence stalking our country, where our minorities live in fear, and Muslims among us are killed under a government that has declared war on Islam.’ —Nayantara Sahgal, journalist, author of Day of Reckoning: Stories (2015).
‘Harsh Mander’s is the voice of Kabir come alive in our violent times. We can hear it to our redemption, ignore it to our peril.’ —Gopalkrishna Gandhi, former administrator and diplomat, Governor of West Bengal 2004-2009
This book is absolutely mandatory reading. You owe it to the much-vaunted “motherland” which is being abused so shamelessly.’—Kiran Nagarkar,ovelist, playwright, film critic and screenwriter.
A riveting documentation of the unmaking of India.’—K.R. Meera, Indian author and journalist, who writes in Malayalam
‘Harsh Mander chillingly unravels the grotesqueness of today’s India. If this book does not awaken you to the horrors of divisive politics propagated, nothing can.’—T.M. Krishna — Indian Carnatic vocalist, writer, activist, author and Ramon Magsaysay awardee
Student activism and cultural activism go hand in hand on Indian campuses. Over the last few years, especially after 2014, student movements in the country against social injustice have increased in numbers and tenacity. Cultural modes of expressing dissent have played a key role within this new wave of student movements that have gripped the nation. This book takes the reader through a journey into the ways cultural activists analyse cultural modes of protest, especially in the context of student movements in the Global South. The book delves into the political and ideological contours set by organisations such as the Indian Progressive Theatre Association (IPTA) and the Progressive Writers’ Association (PWA), and by figures such as Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Habib Jalib, Hemanga Biswas and Safdar Hashmi. The book locates them within the contemporary wave of cultural protests, analyses their continued relevance and argues for a revival of theoretical and practical engagement with the early progenitors of the progressive cultural movement in India.
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