Sunday, February 4, 2007

Reviewed: Luce on the Rise of Modern India

Widely reviewed in newspapers today is Edward Luce, IN SPITE OF THE GODS: The Strange Rise of Modern India (Doubleday). Ben Macintyre writes in the New York Times:
“In Spite of the Gods,” is a series of acutely observed vignettes, held together by a single theme, and an overriding question: India will soon become a great power; what kind of great power will it be?

Luce is the best sort of foreign correspondent: amiable, courteous, curious and gently self-mocking. His admiration for India’s economic miracle and its entrepreneurial elite is as genuine as his dismay at the poverty of its villages and the corruption of its politicians. He finds a country steeped in religiosity with a lingering distrust of modernity, but one that is also changing and modernizing at an astonishing rate, not because of its rich spiritual heritage, but “in spite of the gods.”

For the rest, click here.

1 comment:

sanjay said...

This flies in the face of a recent CNN-IBN survey that shows that 93% of Indians believe in God and that urban Indians are more religious than their rural counterparts.

One of the things that the rise of India will teach the world is a new discourse that breaks out of the old dualities of anti- and pro- globalization forces, of the right vs. the left, of secularism vs. religion, of science vs. spirituality, of economic growth vs. ecological preservation.

Ed Luce seems to have missed this point.