Leftism in India, 1917-1947 (Paperback)Satyabrata Rai Chowdhuri (author)
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This book provides a comprehensive account of the Leftist movements in India during the most decisive phase of its struggle for freedom. It also describes how the Leftist movements interacted with the mainstream Indian freedom movement led by the Indian National Congress, guided by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and his ideology of non-violence. This ideology directly opposed those who believed in Marxism-Leninism and, naturally, their policies clashed at almost every stage of the freedom movement. These clashes gave rise to dramatic developments, which have been described in this book in their proper context and analysed with scholarly objectivity.
The book traces the early twentieth century socio-political awakening of the bourgeois-democratic class of Indian society, the rise of Left-wing nationalists following the Swadeshi Movement, the activities of the early revolutionaries and the formation of the Communist Party of India abroad, the growth of communism in India, the growth of the Left wing within the Indian National Congress (known as the Congress socialists) and various labour and peasant movements.
Leftism in India, 1917-1947 is an essential reading for students of history and political science, civil services aspirants and for anyone wishing to gain a thorough understanding of the origin of and the early practices of the Left in India.
Publisher: SAGE Publications India Pvt Ltd
Number of pages: 228
Weight: 284 g
Dimensions: 241 x 184 mm
Edition: 2nd Revised edition
`Professor Rai Chowdhuri has to be congratulated on such a comprehensive coverage of not only the Communist Party history but also the Left movements in general in India. I also like his interweaving of the history of the mainstream nationalist movement with a history of the Left. There are not many books which cover the same ground and this one, I am sure, will stay a standard reference work for a long time.' -- Meghnad Desai, * London School of Economics and Political Science *
`[This book is] one of the most lucid, nuanced and comprehensive accounts of the role of the political Left in Indian nationalism I have ever read. While many other scholarly accounts have commented on the heterogeneity of Leftist movements in India, few have attempted to delineate in such detail and with such clarity every hue, every highlight and every shade in the entire spectrum of Left politics in the era of high nationalism from 1917 to 1947. It is a task of commendable magnitude accomplished by a distinguished scholar. It will serve as an invaluable resource for both undergraduate and postgraduate students of Indian political history.' -- Debjani Ganguly, * Australian National University *
`Leftism in India, 1917-1947, is an excellent account of the political manoeuvres and theoretical ruminations of Indian radicals during the last thirty years of the liberation movement ... [The] book is an attempt to interweave a study of the mainstream nationalist movement with not only the trajectory of the Communist Party of India, but that of the Left wing of the Indian National Congress.' -- New Politics, USA
`It is a welcome addition to the existing literature, both for its comprehensiveness and the discussion its critical conclusions could generate.' -- The Hindu
`The volume is definitely a significant contribution to the history of the Left movement in India. One would expect Rai Chowdhuri to come out with a successor volume that will cover the history of the communists in India and their transformation, if any at all, up to the present day, especially in the backdrop of Deng Xiaoping's famous dictum: "To be rich is glorious, that is the Marxism of today."' -- The Statesman
`It is necessary to know the early history of the Left in order to make sense of its politics today...this book brings it alive with detailed and objective accounts. The author captures remarkably well the complex milieu in which the communists and other Leftists struggled to find an identity for themselves.' -- The Telegraph
`The book is a history of the nationalist struggle for decolonisation told from the standpoint of the Left in India, as well as an evaluation of the role of Leftism in this struggle. The result is a useful study of the impact that the communists and the Left wing of the Congress had on each other.... Rai Chowdhuri covers in great detail M.N. Roy's role in introducing ideas of Marxism in India, Jawaharlal Nehru's encounter with Fabian socialism, the emergence of working-class parties in urban centres and the Congress socialists' resolve to stay within the Congress but fight for radical socio-economic changes. The very fact that this is a history that looks at different aspects of Leftism in India together must be welcomed.' -- Economic and Political Weekly
`This is a useful reference book that highlights a rather neglected but a significant aspect of Indian politics in the early 20th century. Indeed, by tracing the origin of the Left movement in the era of the national Independence struggle, the author demonstrates how and why the Left movement came to acquire the shape it had in an Independent India.' -- Journal of Asian and African Studies (SAGE Publications)
`This may well be the ultimate work on Indian Leftists covering a tumultuous period-from when Lenin seized power in Russia in 1917 to when India gained freedom in 1947.' -- Indo-Asian News Service
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