Since its first publication in 2004, From Plassey to Partition has come to be regarded as an authoritative history of modern India. And this enlarged edition offers a perceptive analysis of India’s efforts towards modernisation and democratisation since Independence.
The book addresses important historiographical questions by taking cognisance of emergent perspectives adopted by social science scholarship over the last twenty-five years. As a major work of our times, it engages in though-provoking debates on issues like political economy of eighteenth-century India, socio-religious reform and revival, and the nationalist movement.
The newly added concluding chapter provides a succinct account of major developments in postcolonial India during the Nehruvian and subsequent years. It links contemporary debates about Indian nationhood with changes in society, economy and polity, from the years of state-directed planning under a one-party system to the emergence of a market economy in an era of predominantly coalition governments.
Capturing inimitably the rhythms of India’s polyphonic nationalism, this book will be indispensable for students of history and political science. Scholars and researchers will benefit from its detailed and extensive bibliography. And it will guide general readers to an understanding of contemporary India.
Sekhar Bandyopadhyay is Director, New Zealand India Research Institute, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.