Democrats and Dissenters
by Ramachandra Guha
A major new collection of essays by Ramachandra Guha, Democrats and Dissenters is a work of rigorous scholarship on topics of compelling contemporary interest, written with elegance and wit.
The book covers a wide range of themes: from the varying national projects of India’s neighbours to political debates within India itself, from the responsibilities of writers to the complex relationship between democracy and violence. It has essays critically assessing the work of Amartya Sen and Eric Hobsbawm, essays on the tragic predicament of tribals in India who are, as Guha demonstrates, far worse off than Dalits or Muslims, yet get a fraction of the attention and on the peculiar absence of a tradition of conservative intellectuals in India.
Each essay takes up an important topic or an influential intellectual, as a window to explore major political and cultural debates in India and the world. Democrats and Dissenters is a book that is certain to be widely read, and even more widely discussed.
About The Author
Ramachandra Guha was born in Dehradun in 1958, and educated in Delhi and Calcutta. He has taught at the University of Oslo, Stanford, and Yale, and at the Indian Institute of Science. He has been a Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, and also served as the Indo-American Community Chair Visiting Professor at the University of California at Berkeley.
After a peripatetic academic career, with five jobs in ten years on three continents, Guha settled down to become a full-time writer based in Bangalore. His books cover a wide range of themes, including a global history of environmentalism, a biography of an anthropologist-activist, a social history of Indian cricket, and a social history of Himalayan peasants.
Guha’s books and essays have been translated into more than twenty languages. The prizes they have won include the U.K. Cricket Society’s Literary Award and the Leopold-Hidy Prize of the American Society of Environmental History.