The man who would one day help topple British rule and become India's first prime minister started out a surprisingly unremarkable student. Born into a wealthy, politically influential Indian family in the waning years of the Raj, Jawaharlal Nehru was raised on Western secularism and the humanist ideas of the Enlightenment under his father's careful guidance. Once he met Gandhi in 1916, Nehru threw himself into the nonviolent struggle for India's independence, a struggle that wasn't won until 1947. India had found a perfect political complement to her more spiritual advocate, but neither Nehru or Gandhi could prevent the horrific price for independence: Partition.
In this fascinating biography, Tharoor casts an unflinching eye on Nehru's heroic efforts for, and stewardship of, independent India and gives us a careful appraisal of his legacy to the world.
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October 16, 2011
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