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Gandhi and Churchill: parallel lives, divergent world views
Look beyond the hyperbolic subtitle and the breathlessly apocalyptic flourishes with which this big book begins and ends — Arthur Herman would have made a great writer of advertisements for Hollywood epics of the Cecil B. DeMille variety — and you will find a superb double biography of two major 20th-century figures, which is also therefore a superb history of the world their influence shaped. Herman — the author of How the Scots Invented the Modern World — has a genius for compelling historical narrative, and he is as generous to the virtues as he is clear-eyed to the failings of his two principals. Together these qualities make his book the kind that keeps you reading well past bedtime, and overrun your lunch hour. It is also a book that has a surprising effect, which is that if you had preconceptions of the Gandhi-good, Churchill-sometimes-not-so-good variety, you might turn the last page with a sense of having had your notions inverted. It seems almost sacrilegious to think that a vegetarian lover of peace, a man of deep spirituality, pacifism, a fighter for justice, a Saint Theresa to the poor of India and the victims of its civil strife, a man described by India?
Admiral Nelson and Jesus Christ, according to publishing legend, are the two subjects who produce the most miraculous sales. Judging by the autumn lists, books on Winston Churchill are also thought to be good sellers. So where does Churchill actually stand in our perception more than 40 years after his death and nearly 70 since his finest hour? What relevance do his life and times have to our own? On Remembrance Sunday, it seems a good time to ask such questions. One notable thing about Churchill is that he is a far more present figure in US politics than British. Neither Gordon Brown nor David Cameron finds it appropriate to unearth a quote from the last century's grandest orator to spice up their speeches.
May 17, Compare-and-contrast biographies of great leaders which weigh the similarities and differences of each have long proved a popular and informative subgenre. He subsequently found work in South Africa , serving with the Ambulance Corps during the Boer War, working for Indian rights, founding communes, and writing philosophical treatises on nonviolent civil protest. Returning to India, he founded more communes, became a key member of the Indian National Congress , and a leader in the movement for Indian independence. He was assassinated in He was a member of Parliament and served in several cabinet posts including that of chancellor of the exchequer.
Thank you! Each was a late-Victorian political figure who continued to lead into the midth century. Each held an exemplary vision for his country that initially and spectacularly prevailed, but ultimately collided with new modern realities. Born to a well-to-do Hindu family in the western province of Gujarati, Mohandas Gandhi — was groomed in the English educational system to be a barrister and spent a formative period studying in London. His first experience of racial discrimination was in South Africa, where he worked for the enfranchisement of indentured servants. He gradually repudiated Britain for its criminal subjugation and tyranny, fashioning a new spiritual creed from his deep philosophical readings, during his many jail stints, of Tolstoy, Ruskin and the Bhagavad Gita. Each proved great and flawed in different ways.