Singing Gandhi's India: Music And Sonic Nationalism

Give Nonkilling a Chance

By: Lakshmi Subramanian

Pages: 240 pages (Hard Cover)

Price: Rs. 495/-

First Published: January 2020

Published by: Roli Books

About Book:

Here is the first ever and only detailed account of Gandhi and music in India. How politics and music interspersed with each other has been paid scanty, if not any, attention, let alone Gandhi’s role in it. Looking at prayer as politics, singing Gandhi’s India traces Gandhi’s relationship with music and nationalism. Uncovering his writings on music, ashram Bhajan practice, the Vande Mataram debate, Subramanian makes a case for a closer scrutiny of Gandhian oeuvre to map sonic politics in twentieth century India.


“With great care, Lakshmi Subramanian draws out Gandhi’s belief in music as a serious, committed, moral and spiritual activity, and his loathing of it being appropriated for parochial manoeuvres. Singing Gandhi’s India is a powerful narrative that investigates this separation. Through this wonderfully crafted work, Subramanian implores us to ask one question of ourselves: why are we truly moved by music?” - T.M. Krishna

“As historian, Lakshmi Subramanian has always been curious about the peculiar – researching odd-ball stories, where previously unrelated facts come together to create a whole.” - Jane Borges, Mid-Day

About Author:

Lakshmi Subramanian, is an Indian historian with a long and distinguished teaching and research career, having taught history in India and elsewhere. Her work in the fields of maritime history and the social history of Indian music is widely recognized. Post her tenure as Professor of History at the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Kolkata, she has been researching with the Godrej Archives in Mumbai. Currently, she is Professor at the Humanities and Social Sciences Department, BITS Pilani (Goa), and also Associate Member at the Institute of Advanced Studies, Nantes, France.

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