THIS is a collection of articles on different subjects which are not interrelated but cover a wide array of topics. Written by a young student of psychology, the book describes violence as not a mere “disturbance of mind” but something which has roots in deeper causes like absence of justice and inequitable distribution of resources.
She says that wars in the 19th and 20th centuries in Europe were fought mainly because of their policy of colonisation of poor countries. The European nations fought against each other to exercise control over the natural resources of Asia and Africa, resulting in radical changes in the power equations. After the wars, the balance of power shifted to America which has today emerged as the most powerful nation on earth.
The author also draws the reader’s attention to the double standards practiced by America when it comes to the question of human rights and democratic norms. Here Nilanjana mentions Iraqi and Afghani prisoners languishing in the prisons of Abu Gharaib and Guantanomo Bay as also in various East European countries.
In reference to India’s problems, like caste discrimination, gender inequality, mushrooming of squatters, poverty, Nilanjana focuses her attention especially on child labour and children living under deplorable conditions and the resultant juvenile delinquency which is on the rise. Basically the problem is of starvation and hunger.
Sustainable development and achievement of maximum agricultural growth so that every mouth can be fed is the need of the hour.
This book is a mish-mash of varied topics, but makes interesting reading.
(Kalpaz Publications, C-30 Satyawati Nagar, Delhi – 110 052; [email protected])