Thursday, April 12, 2007

Public intellectual of the other India

I had written earlier (here, here and here) about my friend Rahul. Today, Bhupinder has written an appreciation of Rahul’s memoir of his activism in central India in (How the Other Half Lives).

Bhupinder writes:

It is written in the manner of a well read and well-engaged activist, his range of reading is mind boggling, and his experiences as a foot-soldier organizer among the people he chose to work with, fascinating.

But the most exhilarating aspect of the book is is the harmony between thought and action, a constant dialectic between theory and action. Small is the tribe of such people, and fewer still are those who have documented their experience and engagement with some of the poorest of the poor in the country.

He concludes by saying:

Rahul Banerjee has not been able to give back the tongue to the adivasis. But he has learnt their language and spoken for them. And in the process, has etched the ideas and struggles that have defined the sensitivities of our age.

One hopes that he continues to carry forward as a crusading public intellectual of the other India.

1 comment:

Rahul Banerjee said...

when we were in school together i used to refer to rama as venkat because i did not at that time dig the fact that south indians had their names going the other way. i still call him venkat. venkat first picked up the link to my webpage and then wrote on it in this blog and that is how today things have come to a stage where the book i wrote may finally get printed also. i dont know how good the book is given the fact that it is at times a bit pretentious. but i do think that the battles that we have fought in the central indian region are valuable and need to be chronicled. so far there has not been any chronicler apart from me. so if for nothing else then as a first mover i suppose the book does deserve to be published in print!