September 1, 2012
"I am writing a book about Patna where I want to present what the people who live there think about it. A part of me believes that Patna might be the victim of bad press. Did you know, for instance, that somewhere in the dark recesses of history, Patna produced the best opium?"

Amitava Kumar at India Ink, The New York TimesWhat Happens in Patna, Stays in Patna?

Amitava Kumar’s Web Site.

August 5, 2012
"Congress had its place in the national liberation struggle. Gandhi, who had made it the mass force it became, called at independence for its dissolution. He was right. Since then the party has been a steadily increasing calamity for the country. Its exit from the scene would be the best single gift Indian democracy could give itself."

Perry Anderson in London Review of BooksAfter Nehru

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August 5, 2012
"Gandhi’s indictment of modern civilization went further. According to him, the industrial revolution, by turning human labor into a source of power, profit, and capital, had made economic prosperity the central goal of politics, enthroning machinery over men and relegating religion and ethics to irrelevance."

Pankaj Mishra in The New YorkerTHE INNER VOICE

Gandhi’s real legacy.

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January 28, 2012
"For the sake of preventing a nuclear-armed Iran and for the solidity of the U.S.-Indian relationship, the two nations’ respective leaders should engage on Iran, and soon."

Richard Fontaine at The DiplomatThe Coming U.S.-India Train Wreck

November 1, 2011
"Human potentialities are not adequately recognized. I think we live with stereotypes, and once a stereotype becomes unfashionable, then pick up another stereotype. But there is another way of looking at it: the potentialities that are inherent in some of the cultures in this part of the world have never been fully explored. People are afraid of them, they become so nervous about the darker side of human nature that they do not like to know of them; they think this would be a compromise with realism, a compromise with statecraft."

Ashis Nandy

October 1, 2011
"He proceeded to greet the Ivy Leaguers with a “shout-out” to Queens College and Stony Brook University, both decidedly public institutions. The audience was thoroughly confused, and it only got worse. A couple of minutes later, Heems tried to lead the students in a chant of “I will drop out of this demon university”. I looked around and noticed several furious faces."

Vivek Menezes

July 6, 2011
"A few years ago, he suggested Indians watch more late night television instead of having sex as a means to stem population growth in the nation of 1.2 billion people."


February 8, 2011
"That sense of disorientation continues as we enter the gates of the Pearly Dew school on May 24, 2010, where blazered and kilted students are lined up in bleachers at the side of the basketball court, under the watchful eye of their school principal. I find myself remembering how subversive rock music has been considered almost all through its existence, how unlikely this whole scene is, and then up to the mike bustles Lou Majaw with thanks to Kong Ibari (the school principal, now beaming), and then, just like a ritual invocation, “Happy Birthday Bob Dylan, wherever you are and God bless you. Thank you for everything that you’ve done for us, and especially for Lou Majaw."

Vivek Menezes

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