6 Books for Students of Doon Literature – Why Chose Them, What They Say About India 1900-1947 | Pro IQRA News

6 Books for Students of Doon Literature – Why Chose Them, What They Say About India 1900-1947

 | Pro IQRA News

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One of the major advantages of the National Education Policy 2020 is the freedom and flexibility given to university departments to update and upgrade the curriculum of all subjects, encouraging interdisciplinary approaches to complex issues. Using this wisdom, Professor Surekha Dangwal, Vice-Chancellor of Doon University, asked me to design a credit course for the Master’s program in English Literature, which would also give students a comprehensive picture of India’s transformation from 1900 to 1947.

Starting this year, students will read Rudyard Kipling’s Kim, Rabindranath Tagore’s Gitanjali, EM Forster’s A Passage to India, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala’s Heat and Dust, Mulk Raj Anand’s Untouchable and Khushwant Singh’s Train to Pakistan. We can call it “Literature and Beyond” because it is a time span where fiction and non-fiction come together to give the student a better understanding of what happened in India during the first five decades of the last century. Many books like Bipin Chandra’s Towards Freedom or VP Menon’s The Transfer of Power in India do not reflect this.

The idea emerged three years ago during an interview with trainee officers who edit the house diary of ‘Three.One.One’ at the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in Mussoorie, Uttarakhand. The name was chosen after lengthy discussions to respect and recognize Article 311 of the Indian Constitution, which gives civil servants the ability as well as the responsibility to act without fear or favour. He wanted to know about the books that would give him accurate information about India from the beginning of the last century to the beginning of independence.

The interview was conducted in my study, just down the stairs from the director’s office, which was once used as a lodge for visitors who came to visit Happy Valley’s special meeting lounge and a well-stocked Couldn’t afford room equipped with a bar. Legend has it that in 1883, when Kipling was still a struggling writer, he was the guest of Mr. Wooltzer, manager of the Charleville Hotel, which currently houses the academy. A poem about that period, which appears on The Kipling Society’s website, is as follows:

A burning sun in a cloudless sky,
And April dies,
A dusty mall – three amazing sunsets –
And May is over,
Gray mud below – gray clouds overhead,
And June is dead!

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