A good read; I agree with this reviewer — this probably is the best of the three books — even though, I found some of the later chapters a tad too lengthy.
Archive for the ‘Books’ Category
Sriram’s article on Chembai and the Music Academy is a must-read. It is very difficult to argue forcefully or fight with Institutions while maintaining no ill-will. Chembai seems to have managed it. When we are on the topic, let me also strongly recommend Lakshmi Subramanian’s From the Tanjore court to the Madras Music Academy: A social history of music in South India. I am yet to complete the book. But I liked whatever I have read so far.
Though this books seems was published in 1997 (and, I have 2007 second revised edition with me), I was unaware of its existence till I saw a reference in one of Ram Guha’s articles. It is a must-read, especially if you are interested in the poetry of Mira, Andal and Akka Mahadevi. I especially liked the sections of the book on Sangam literature, Budhdhist and Jain literature and Veerashaiva movement — obviously because of my own interests. Strongly recommended. If I have any quibble, it is that some of the pieces are a bit dis-jointed and there are a few minor mis-prints and mistakes.
In this book, Syeda Saiyidin Hameed has brought out the eminence of Maulana Azad with great aplomb. … The book being extremely analytical crisscrosses the life and times of Azad seamlessly adhering to his concepts of Muslim advancements and Hindu-Muslim unity. Indeed a book to be reckoned with in understanding the Muslims, national movement and of course Maulana Azad.
After having gone through only about one fifths of the book, I am already convinced that the book is a must-read for anybody interested in Indian national movement.
There are quite a few surprises (for me, at least) in the book. For example, I did not know that one of the Sufi saints (Mansur Hallaj) declared An-al-Haq ‘I am Truth’. I also did not realise that for people like Maulana, the participation in Indian freedom movement was a religious duty:
He reminded the Muslims that thirteen hundred years ago they had embarked upon bringing freedom to all mankind. They owed it to their belief in Allah and His Prophet that India’s freedom should be achieved and achieved only through their vaseela (intercession).
Till now, I (at least) have never heard of this strand of Indian national movement.
As a matter of fact, I found the views of Maulana on religion to be the most interesting:
There is one type of religion — hereditary; believe what your forefathers believed in. Another type is geographical, which comprises of the well-worn path travelled by many on any given piece of the earth. Then there is religion of the census survey; put down ‘Islam’ in the appropriate box. There is also the conventional religion — the compendium of rituals and ceremonies, do not tamper with it; allow it to run all over you. Apart from all these there is the haqiqi (true) religion and it is the path to this which somehow always gets lost.
From the preface, I understand that Oxford India rejected the manuscript in 1997 while OUP, Pakistan published it. Now, in 2014, OUP, India has published the book. Better late than never, I suppose.
The only thing that I would have liked more is if there were more photographs added to the book — though the two (on the cover) and the one with the author’s family (By the way is it K M Munshi with the Gandhi cap in the photo?) are really nice!
I bought Bruce Shore’s Graduate Advisor Handbook on the recommendation of Rex at Savage Minds. I enjoyed reading the book. It is a short one — running into some 160 odd pages. It has something for everybody associated with grad school — be it administrators, students, or, of course, advisors. There are six chapters — beginning the supervisory relationship, student centred advising, maintaining boundaries in routine interactions, quagmires and sticky situations, career support and institutionalising a culture of student centered approach. There are also three very interesting appendices. I found the book very interesting and very useful. Strongly recommended; if you are a newbie in academics — joining for your PhD or for your first teaching job — doubly strongly recommended!
This is the second time I am using Ubuntu automatic upgrade; yesterday, I went from Ubuntu 12.04 to 14.04. But for some glitches with tex-common and octave (which I believe I have fixed now). Very nice indeed!
Read Dian Fosey’s Gorillas in the mist. A very sad but truly elevating reading experience. Strongly recommended.
Also read Reif Larsen’s The young and prodigious T. S. Spivet. A nice novel. Enjoyed reading it a lot. Another strong recommendation!
All three are great. I have finished 1 and 2 and am about to complete 3. If I have to order the books by my preference, it would be 3, 1, and 2.