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Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography

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Rarely seen images and rigorous research provides fascinating insight into one of the most revered figures in modern Indian history. Gandhi is an intimate history of the evolution of a mischievous, fun-loving boy into the Mahatma. From his schooling and early marriage in Kathiawar to his first brushes with the grandeur of London; from his chance employment for a legal case Rarely seen images and rigorous research provides fascinating insight into one of the most revered figures in modern Indian history. Gandhi is an intimate history of the evolution of a mischievous, fun-loving boy into the Mahatma. From his schooling and early marriage in Kathiawar to his first brushes with the grandeur of London; from his chance employment for a legal case in South Africa to a train ride in Pietermaritzburg that led to his first fight for equality; from a relatively unsuccessful lawyer to a globally celebrated crusader for human rights-Gandhi was that rare rebel who redefined the meaning of mass resistance for generation to come. The chronological text and rarely seen photographs bring out his unique complexities for a new generation of readers.


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Rarely seen images and rigorous research provides fascinating insight into one of the most revered figures in modern Indian history. Gandhi is an intimate history of the evolution of a mischievous, fun-loving boy into the Mahatma. From his schooling and early marriage in Kathiawar to his first brushes with the grandeur of London; from his chance employment for a legal case Rarely seen images and rigorous research provides fascinating insight into one of the most revered figures in modern Indian history. Gandhi is an intimate history of the evolution of a mischievous, fun-loving boy into the Mahatma. From his schooling and early marriage in Kathiawar to his first brushes with the grandeur of London; from his chance employment for a legal case in South Africa to a train ride in Pietermaritzburg that led to his first fight for equality; from a relatively unsuccessful lawyer to a globally celebrated crusader for human rights-Gandhi was that rare rebel who redefined the meaning of mass resistance for generation to come. The chronological text and rarely seen photographs bring out his unique complexities for a new generation of readers.

30 review for Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    leynes

    Woop woop! This is how you write and design a biography. In 2018 I want to read more nonfiction, especially biographies and memoirs, to educate myself on histories and conflicts from all over the world. Kapoor’s biography on Gandhi definitely got the job done and made me super excited to check out more books from that genre. Prior to reading this illustrated biography, I knew next to nothing about India’s non-violent independence movement against British rule and I wasn’t familiar with Gandhi as Woop woop! This is how you write and design a biography. In 2018 I want to read more nonfiction, especially biographies and memoirs, to educate myself on histories and conflicts from all over the world. Kapoor’s biography on Gandhi definitely got the job done and made me super excited to check out more books from that genre. Prior to reading this illustrated biography, I knew next to nothing about India’s non-violent independence movement against British rule and I wasn’t familiar with Gandhi as a person or leader. The only thing I knew (and the reason why I picked up this biography) was the fact that Martin Luther King, Jr. was inspired by Gandhi’s take on non-violent civil disobedience and used some of his teachings during the African American civil rights movement. After reading Kapoor’s work, I feel much more knowledgeable and grounded when it comes to India’s struggle for liberation but also when it comes to Gandhi – the man, not the legend. Throughout the biography you can feel Kapoor’s affection for Gandhi. In the foreword he talks about how much his parents (and Indian society in general) were influenced by Gandhi’s teachings and his persona, so when Kapoor was introduced to Bapu early on, he naturally felt drawn towards him. Nonetheless, Kapoor managed to give a differentiated picture of Gandhi and his paradoxes. He didn't shy away from presenting the ways in which he neglected and oppressed his family (especially his wife and sons) and his abusive sexual practices (like enforcing to sleep naked with underage women, his niece included). I’m very glad that Kapoor didn’t go the easy route of portraying Gandhi like a saint. Instead, I was introduced to the human that he was, flaws and all. After reading the biography, I don’t feel particularly affectionate towards him, since some of his more questionable actions (especially when it came to victim blaming and punishing women for ‘inviting sexual invitation’) appalled and disgusted me. From my judgement, it was Kapoor’s aim to show the political and historic side of India’s struggle for independence, while using Gandhi’s life as a thread to move smoothly through the significant events. This structure worked really well for me, since the information density was great whilst also offering a more personal look at the consequences for the actual people who lived through it. One of the reasons why this particular biography will stick with me for a long time is its design. I have never held a book in my hands that was more beautifully crafted. This truly is a masterpiece. The paper quality is out of this world and all of the prints (whether photos, illustrations, copies of letters, etc.) have the highest quality and are just a joy to look at. In my estimation, half of this book is taken up by visual elements while the other half is text. And I fucking love that ratio! ;) Of course, this entails that there isn’t enough text to really dig deep into all of the events and ramifications, but, personally, I didn’t mind it, since I’d rather have all of these beautiful photos and timely documents that gave reality to the writing. Everything seems so real, raw and authentic because you have all of this visual input (and proof). The only reason why this isn’t a five-star book for me (my actual rating is 4.5) is the fact that Kapoor often presumed specific cultural and political knowledge from his readers. I’m aware that this is linked with the fact that the marvelous pictures took up so much space of this book (and I wouldn’t want it any other way), nonetheless, I had to google quite a few things while reading in order to ensure my understanding, because Kapoor didn’t bother to explain them (e.g. the practice of untouchability). All in all, Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography is everything I could’ve hoped for. It’s an easily accessible piece of nonfiction that made it possible for me (without having any prior knowledge on the topic) to fully immerse myself in another culture, another time period and new ways of thinking.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Samuel Oktavianus

    Gandhi: an Illustrated History provides a glimpse into Gandhi's life, told chronologically, from his early days up until the days of his assasination—all presented with astonishing illustrations. I haven't read any books on Gandhi or watched the famous 1982 Movie (yet), so I can't judge if this is a good book or not. Before I read this book I assumed he was just a famous semi-nude Indian preacher who wants to bring peace for everyone. Now I know a little more about him than I did before, includi Gandhi: an Illustrated History provides a glimpse into Gandhi's life, told chronologically, from his early days up until the days of his assasination—all presented with astonishing illustrations. I haven't read any books on Gandhi or watched the famous 1982 Movie (yet), so I can't judge if this is a good book or not. Before I read this book I assumed he was just a famous semi-nude Indian preacher who wants to bring peace for everyone. Now I know a little more about him than I did before, including his "dark side". It's a quick & simple read for everyone. For me, it's neither too long nor too short. The writing's not too pompous or extravagant too, which makes the whole story refreshing and truly enjoyable. You don't need to be an expert at Indian History to understand the book. The book's interesting bits make this a page-turner for all non-fiction fans out there. The book has a little section in which the author writes about something trivial (stories, events, people), but I find those to be entertaining. In conclusion, Gandhi: an Illustrated History is a fantastic introduction to India's most famous figure, narrated linearly with great & simple storytelling. This is the first book that I truly loved in 2020 so far. It's a gem and I think you should add this to your autobiography shelf.

  3. 4 out of 5

    The Book Grocer

    Purchase Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography here for just $15! Pramod Kapoor has written an incredible biography of Gandhi that reveals so much new information, you will be amazed. Would make a great gift, although you might find yourself wanting to read this illustrated biography. Buy 2 copies! Elisa - The Book Grocer Purchase Gandhi: An Illustrated Biography here for just $15! Pramod Kapoor has written an incredible biography of Gandhi that reveals so much new information, you will be amazed. Would make a great gift, although you might find yourself wanting to read this illustrated biography. Buy 2 copies! Elisa - The Book Grocer

  4. 5 out of 5

    Harshvardhan Rao

    A fantastic way to write about a great personality, a Mahatma. The way Pramod Kapoor wrote this book is worth reading, every page will tell you something which you have never known about Gandhi. May it be the Dandi March, or his stay in South Africa, how Gandhi presented the contrasting view from Sarvar on the same platform in London. Every page is worth reading. Highly recommended.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Roger

    Excellent overview of this complex yet simple man who loved his country and yet somewhat neglected his children, especially his oldest son. The photographs throughout the text really brought dimension to his story.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Stefan

    A great design with nice photographs, letters and sidestories. Chronological story about "bapu" as a person and initiator of Indian independence. A great design with nice photographs, letters and sidestories. Chronological story about "bapu" as a person and initiator of Indian independence.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mohit Pawnday

    Excellent coffee table book with great production values , recomended gift to guests good production value and good scholarship

  8. 5 out of 5

    Dr.Madan Bhimsen Jadhav

    Book full of photos of and related to MK Gandhi. This biography stands out from others in this aspect. Plus there are some paragraphs or incidents which you don’t find in others. The style of narration is also good. Definitely recommendable, especially for beginners.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Anas

  10. 5 out of 5

    Anna Steinunn

  11. 5 out of 5

    Antonio De la rosa

  12. 5 out of 5

    Tije Bekkering

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tyson

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ramin Jalili

  15. 4 out of 5

    Letty

  16. 4 out of 5

    Christiaan Mertens

  17. 4 out of 5

    Emma

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kaiwalya Dani

  19. 4 out of 5

    Hillegont

  20. 4 out of 5

    Cozy Reading

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ayush Krishn

  22. 5 out of 5

    Charles Karaian

  23. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    A wonderful easy to read book that gives us insight into Gandi"s life and the times he lived in through pictures, letters and artwork. The visual imagery fuels our imaginations to bring us closer to the man we so admire. A wonderful easy to read book that gives us insight into Gandi"s life and the times he lived in through pictures, letters and artwork. The visual imagery fuels our imaginations to bring us closer to the man we so admire.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Dharm Patel

  25. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Samorini

  26. 5 out of 5

    Arun Kumar

  27. 4 out of 5

    Preyas Mistry

  28. 4 out of 5

    Deb Soliz

    I would have loved to review this book however it was never sent to me. I wanted to read it but I never received it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Manuele Covili

  30. 5 out of 5

    Fairy

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