Pankaj Mishra’s ‘From the Ruins of Empire’

September 22, 2012 in Uncategorized | Comments (1)



A few weeks ago the Wall Street Journal (Asia) wrote to me asking for a short recommendation of a soon-to-be-published book. My pick was Pankaj Mishra’s From the Ruins of Empire.


From the Ruins of Empire: The Revolt Against the West and the Remaking of Asia

By Pankaj Mishra

(Farrar, Strauss, 2012)


History is sometimes a contest of narratives. In this book Pankaj Mishra looks back on the 19th and 20th centuries through the work of three Asian thinkers: Jamal al-Din Afghani, Liang Qichao and Rabindranath Tagore. The story that emerges is quite different from that which most Western readers have come to accept. Enormously ambitious but thoroughly readable, this book is essential reading for everyone who is interested in the processes of change that have led to the emergence of today’s Asia.










One Response to “Pankaj Mishra’s ‘From the Ruins of Empire’”

RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. Comment by ShanthSeptember 26, 2012 at 3:34 am   Reply

    I haven’t yet gotten a chance to read this book, but I’ve heard good and bad things about it. I was wondering what you think of the charge that Mishra seems to be whitewashing divisions and contradictions in the thinking of the Asian thinkers he mentions. Here for example, is some criticism of Mishra’s ignorance or intentional sweeping under the rug of Afghani’s more unpalatable views regarding modernity and secularism. I would be interested in hearing your take on this. Of course, I should also just read the book for myself.

Leave a Reply


ucuz ukash