September 08, 2014

Bipin Chandra, the historian is no more.

Bipin Chandra, the renowned Marxist historian is no more. I have learned it through the facebook page of Prof Rajiv Lochan of Punjab University. He was born in 1927 in Himanchal and died in 2014.

Bipin Chandra is known among the students of history as the author of 'India's Struggle for Independence'. In 2008 came his Indian after Independence(first published in 2000). His other book which I read was Communalism in India. In 2009 came his re published compilation of Nationalism and Colonialism in Modern India with a Prologue by Aditya Mukherjee, his coauthor as well Professor of Jwahar Lal Nehru University New Delhi. In 2008 he received life time achievement award from Indian History Congress. He became National Research Professor in 2006.

My understanding of Modern History was framed by reading of text book of V. D. Mahajan, the father of Mridula Mukherjee, one of the co author of Bipin Chandra. Then I graduated to Modern India by Sumit Sarkar. I was not fully qualified to understand that book. I struggled. Then I came across Bipin Chandra's books. It introduced me to paradigms like STS or PCP. Such interpretations definitely nurtured my faculties of learning history. I happened to meet Aditya Mukherjee and even interact. I developed a wish to meet Bipin Chandra. But now that would not be fulfilled.

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