India's Prisoner: A Biography of Edward John Thompson, by Mary Lago

By Mary Lago

Edward John Thompson—novelist, poet, journalist, and historian of India—was a liberal suggest for Indian tradition and political self-determination at a time while Indian affairs have been of little basic curiosity in England. As a pal of Nehru, Gandhi, and different Congress social gathering leaders, Thompson had contacts that many English officers didn't have and didn't know the way to get. therefore, he was once a superb channel for reading India to England and England to India.

Thompson first went to India in 1910 as a Methodist missionary to educate English literature at Bankura Wesleyan collage. It used to be there that he cultivated the literary circle of Rabindranath Tagore, as but little recognized in England, and there Thompson discovered of the political contradictions and deficiencies of India's academic method. His significant clash, own undefined, was once the lingering impact of Victorian Wesleyanism. In 1923, Thompson resigned and back to coach at Oxford.

Interest in South Asia experiences was once minimum at Oxford, and Thompson grew to become more and more to writing Indian background. That paintings, and his precise account of his studies within the Mesopotamian crusade in international warfare I, offer a standpoint chanced on nowhere else, in addition to own perspectives of literary figures reminiscent of Robert Graves and Robert Bridges. Thompson used to be additionally a big impression at the paintings of his son, E. P. Thompson, a latest historian of eighteenth-century England.

This vital biography covers politically major occasions among Thompson's arrival in India and as much as his demise, and casts massive mild on Thompson and his struggles together with his faith and his dating with India. the 1st biography of E. J. Thompson, "India's Prisoner" could have common charm, in particular to these attracted to South Asian and English heritage, literature, and cultural history.

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The Knight Mystic came from that period of prohibition and uncertainty. The completed Lady, after her brief bow to the reading public, retired to the wings with her well-meant borrowings from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the Sleeping Beauty legend, spurious Bohemian history and geography, and Arcadia. ”25 Cautiously, he approached the subject of Edward’s assignment. He wrote, “So you too are going out. Take a fountain-pen and don’t wait till habit and use APPRENTICESHIP 37 kills the colour and the strangeness before you put down your impressions.

I felt terribly sorry for the mother, there was such a look of terror in her eyes. ” At his first funeral, for a three-year-old girl who had died of diphtheria, “I felt myself an inadequate bungler as I prayed over the tiny coffin. I noticed with a kind of shock the (apparently) ghoulish interest the little children take; our first knowledge of the funeral’s approach 34 “INDIA’S PRISONER” was the sudden rush of small girls within the gate; hardly was the service within the church over when there was a stampede round the sidegate to the grave.

He was no better but carried on with pastoral duties, a theological institute, school supervision, sermons “to the heathen 2 or 3 times a week,” the general circuit work, and “a little translation work. . ” By April 1890 he admitted that he had “never fully recovered my strength & vigour. . When once thoroughly down in this climate it seems impossible ever to pick up again entirely without a trip home. ” The doctor cautioned restraint. ” He wanted to stay for twelve more years but at last admitted that he could soldier on no longer.

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