India's War

India's War

World War II and the Making of Modern South Asia

Book - 2016
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Grand Central Pub
Between 1939 and 1945 India underwent extraordinary and irreversible change. Hundreds of thousands of Indians suddenly found themselves in uniform, fighting in the Middle East, North and East Africa, Europe and-something simply never imagined-against a Japanese army poised to invade eastern India. With the threat of the Axis powers looming, the entire country was pulled into the vortex of wartime mobilization. By the war's end, the Indian Army had become the largest volunteer force in the conflict, consisting of 2.5 million men, while many millions more had offered their industrial, agricultural, and military labor. It was clear that India would never be same-the only question was: would the war effort push the country toward or away from independence?

In India's War, historian Srinath Raghavan paints a compelling picture of battles abroad and of life on the home front, arguing that the war is crucial to explaining how and why colonial rule ended in South Asia. World War II forever altered the country's social landscape, overturning many Indians' settled assumptions and opening up new opportunities for the nation's most disadvantaged people. When the dust of war settled, India had emerged as a major Asian power with her feet set firmly on the path toward Independence.

From Gandhi's early urging in support of Britain's war efforts, to the crucial Burma Campaign, where Indian forces broke the siege of Imphal and stemmed the western advance of Imperial Japan, Raghavan brings this underexplored theater of WWII to vivid life. The first major account of India during World War II, India's War chronicles how the war forever transformed India, its economy, its politics, and its people, laying the groundwork for the emergence of modern South Asia and the rise of India as a major power.


Baker & Taylor
Examines India's role in World War II and paints a picture of battles abroad and life on the home front, arguing that the war is crucial to explaining why colonial rule ended in South Asia.

Baker
& Taylor

"Between 1939 and 1945 India underwent extraordinary and irreversible change. Hundreds of thousands of Indians suddenly found themselves in uniform, fighting in the Middle East, North and East Africa, Europe, and against a Japanese army poised to invade eastern India. In India's War, historian Srinath Raghavan paints a compelling picture of battles abroad and life on the home front, arguing that the war is crucial to understanding how and why colonial rule ended in South Asia,"--NoveList.
Between 1939 and 1945 India underwent irreversible change when Indians suddenly found themselves fighting in World War II, and the author paints a picture of battles abroad and life on the home front, arguing that the war is crucial to explaining why colonial rule ended in South Asia. 15,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : Basic Books, a member of the Perseus Books Group, 2016
ISBN: 9780465030224
Branch Call Number: 940.5425 RAGHAVAN
Characteristics: xvii, 554 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm

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fondreader
Nov 26, 2016

This is an amazing book. This is a subject whose scope I doubt most non-Indian and quite a few Indian people realize. The author is a wonderful and engaging writer. Though it is somewhat technical in terms of the military aspects; i.e., battles fought, tactics used, structure of the British and Indian military forces, the story doesn't get bogged down by these details. I wouldn't classify this as military history, so much as a social history of the war that includes the military aspect.

Learning that there were 2.5 million Indian soldiers who fought in Africa, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, and even Europe and what these experiences led to in Indian history was fascinating.

For anyone interested in understanding the dynamics of the 20th Century, this book deserves to be read!

Kudos to Srinath Raghavan!

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