India

NWPR Books
2:33 am
Sun June 29, 2014

'Rogue Elephant' Asks: Is Democracy Right For India?

Over the course of the past month, some 600 million Indians went to the polls to elect a new government — the largest exercise in democracy in the world.

The results surprised few: Discontented voters tossed out the ruling Congress Party and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Congress, which has controlled India much of the time since its independence in 1947, has now been reduced to a parliamentary remnant.

Read more
NWPR Books
8:11 am
Mon June 23, 2014

With Memories And Online Maps, A Man Finds His 'Way Home'

Saroo Brierley was born in Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh, India, and currently lives in Hobart, Tasmania.
Richard Malone Courtesy of G. P. Putnam's Sons

More than 25 years ago, Saroo Brierley was one of many poor children in rural India. At 4 years old, he couldn't read: He didn't even know the name of his hometown. His mother was raising four children on her own, and they were constantly hungry. Brierley's older brothers would hop trains to nearby towns to search for scraps to eat.

Read more
NWPR Books
4:02 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

A Look At India's New Leader, Through The Lens Of Literature

Cover detail of India: A Million Mutinies Now

Originally published on Sat May 24, 2014 12:13 am

On Monday, Narendra Modi will be sworn in as India's prime minister. His rise to power is a remarkable story. A former tea vendor who speaks poor English, Modi is a distinct outsider to India's political and cultural establishment. His election signals the extent to which India is shedding its old hierarchies and class barriers, becoming a more meritocratic society.

Read more
NWPR Books
4:03 am
Thu May 22, 2014

'Girl In The Road' Is A Dizzying Journey

Can you write about the future these days without it being apocalyptic? It's not clear whether Monica Byrne was trying to answer that question in her debut novel, The Girl in the Road — but she does it anyway. Taking place near the end of the 21st century in India and Africa — as well as on a high-tech bridge that spans the Indian Ocean between the two — the book isn't short on misery, tragedy or violence. It certainly isn't optimistic. At the same time, it gracefully dodges the apocalypse-mongering that's become all but de rigueur in near-future science fiction.

Read more
NWPR Books
8:18 am
Sat April 5, 2014

A Century Of History In The Life Of An Ordinary Indian

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Read more
NWPR Books
1:07 pm
Fri February 14, 2014

Author Of Book Yanked In India Says Move Has Backfired

Indian activists from the student wing of Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party protest near the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi on May 25, 2010, against Wendy Doniger's The Hindus. Penguin Books, India, said this week that it would withdraw the book and pulp it.
Anindito Mukherjee EPA/Landov

Originally published on Fri February 14, 2014 5:09 pm

We told you earlier today [Friday] about a University of Chicago professor whose book was withdrawn in India after a Hindu group brought a court challenge against the publisher, Penguin Books, India.

Read more
NWPR Books
6:03 am
Sat December 14, 2013

For The Ruling In India, Two Books To Measure Its Impact

An Indian gay rights activist looks down during an anti-Section 377 protest in New Delhi on December 11, 2013.
Manan Vatsyayana AFP/Getty Images

In a surprise move, the Indian Supreme Court this week ruled to uphold a ban on gay sex. The ban, instituted under British colonial authority more than 150 years ago, had been repealed in 2009. With its reinstatement, the law, also known as Section 377, once again makes homosexual acts punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Read more
NWPR Books
11:37 am
Tue November 19, 2013

'Coolie Woman' Rescues Indentured Women From Anonymity

"Immigrant number 96153. That's how my great-grandmother was cataloged, that was the number on her immigration pass." says Gaiutra Bahadur, author of the new book Coolie Woman.

Bahadur set out to uncover her family's roots by following a paper trail of colonial archives and ship records that traced her great-grandmother's journey from a small village in India to the cane fields of Guyana.

Read more
NWPR Books
4:02 am
Thu August 29, 2013

Mystery Series' Portly P.I. Peels Back The Layers Of Delhi Society

In Tarquin Hall's novels, Vish Puri's detective office is located in Khan Market, near shops like this one.
Julie McCarthy NPR

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 2:59 pm

For an introduction to India's cultural and culinary delights, you might hop a flight to Delhi or book a trip to Mumbai. But to meet the country sans passport free of airport indignities, you could just curl up with the crime novels of Tarquin Hall.

Vish Puri, Hall's opinionated private investigator, is a 50-something Punjabi super sleuth with a fondness for family and food. The mustachioed detective cracks open India's underbelly with a caseload that delves into forbidden love, corruption in Indian cricket and the deadly clash between science and superstition.

Read more
NWPR Books
4:03 am
Tue July 16, 2013

For The Love Of The Game: How Cricket Transformed India

Cricket Game
iStockphoto.com

The English language and cricket were Britain's two largest colonial legacies in India, says journalist James Astill, but it is the second of these bequests that is the subject of his important and incisive new book, The Great Tamasha: Cricket, Corruption, And the Turbulent Rise of Modern India. Astill is a former bureau chief for the Economist in New Delhi, and he notes the parallels between the country's control of cricket and its dramatic economic rise.

Read more

Pages