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The Last Bunglow - Writings on Allahabad
The Last Bunglow - Writings on Allahabad

The Last Bunglow - Writings on Allahabad

by Arvind Krishna Mehrotra

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Product ID:19915

Language

English

Publisher

Penguin

ISBN

0143101188 - Year: 2007 - Pages: 331

Binding

Paperback

Arvind Krishna Mehrotra
Shipping Note: This item usually arrives at your doorstep in 10-15 days

Author: Arvind Krishna Mehrotra
Translator(s)/ Edito: Arvind Krishna Mehrotra
Publisher: Penguin
Year: 2007
Language: English
Pages: 331
ISBN/UPC (if available): 0143101188

Description

Located at the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the invisible Saraswati, Allahabad, or Godville-the babu translation of the name that Mark Twain came across-has been frequented by pilgrims for two thousand years. However, it was only towards the latter half of the nineteenth century that Allahabad shed its identity as another dusty north Indian town and emerged as one of the premier cities of the Raj and the capital of the North-West Provinces. This metamorphosis, ironically, was brought about by colonial rule, whose beginnings Fanny Parkes has described at great length. Allahabad was the home not only of the Pioneer newspaper, where Kipling was employed, but also of literary figures like Harivansh Rai Bachchan and Suryakant Tripathi ‘Nirala’. Its university, one of the oldest in the country, attracted students from far and wide. Visited by the Buddhist scholar Hsiuan Tsang in the seventh century, the city is today visited by spiritual con men and con women, as well as ordinary pilgrims, who come to attend the Magh and Kumbh Melas. As Kama Maclean’s essay shows, far from being an ancient religious festival, the Kumbh Mela, which is held every twelve years, originated as recently as the 1860s.

Colonial Allahabad, along with the intellectual energy that colonialism generated, has all but disappeared. The bungalows have gone, and so have the last of those who inhabited them. Their descendants can only recall a lost time.

In 1824, Bishop Heber wrote that Allahabad was a desolate and ruinous place. Three years later, Mirza Ghalib compared it to hell, only hell was better. But for Jawaharlal Nehru, Allahabad was where he was born and where he cut his political teeth; for Nayantara Sehgal, it was a model for civilized living; for Ved Mehta, it was, like other Indian cities, ‘a jumble of British, Muslim, and Hindu influences’; for Saeed Jaffrey, it was a place where a good time could be had, while one picked up a decent education; for Gyanranjan, it was a city one could fall in love with in one’s youth; and for I. Allan Sealy, it was his parents’ home town, a reservoir of family lore.

The Last Bungalow: Writings on Allahabad is a memorial to a now forgotten city, whose rise was as meteoric as its fall.

Contents

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

A NOTE ON THE SELECTION

A NOTE ON THE TEXT

Descendants: An Introduction
Arvind Krishna Mehrotra

HSIUAN TSANG
From Buddhist Records of the Western World

RALPH FITCH
From Richard Hakluyt’s Principal Navigations, Voiages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation

REGINALD HEBER
From Narrative of a Journey Thought the Upper Provinces of India From Calcutta to Bombay, 1924-25

GHALIB
A Letter of Grievance from my wanderings

BAHADUR SINGH BHATNAGAR
From Yadgar-i-Bahaduri

FANNY PARKES
From Wanderings of a Pilgrim

MATILDA SPRY
Our Pretty Bungalow is now a heap of ruins

BHOLANAUTH CHUNDER
From the Travels of a Hindoo to Various Parts of Bengal and Upper India

RUDYARD KIPLING
From Something of Myself

EDMONIA HILL
The Young Kipling

MARK TWAIN
From Following the Equator: A Journey Around the world

DAVID LELYVELD
Swaraj Bhavan and Sir Sayyid Ahmad Khan

JAWAHARLAL NEHRU
From An Autobiography

HARIVANSH RAI BACHCHAN
From In the Afternoon of Time

NARMADESHWAR UPADHYAYA
From Snippets form Memory

AMARANATHA JHA
From Sarojini Naidu: A Personal Homage

SUDHIR KUMAR RUDRA
From The Rudra Book

RAJESHWAR DAYAL
From A Life of Our Times

SURYAKANT TRIPATHI NIRALA
Breaking Stones

NAYANTARA SAHGAL
From Prison and Chocolate Cake

KATE CHISHOLM
Best Bakery in town

SAEED JAFFREY
From An Actor’s Journey

ESTHER MARY LYONS
Railway colony

VED MEHTA
From Portrait of India

ARVIND KRISHNA MEHROTRA
Partial Recall
The Roys

PANKAJ MISHRA
From An End Of Suffering

KAMA MACLEAN
On the Modern Kumbh Mela

GYANRAJAN
Vagabond Nights

ALLAN SEALY
Three Gandhis

PALASH KRISHNA MEHROTRA
Sex and the Small Town

COPYRIGHT ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

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