Hardback
April 18, 2011
9780253355874
English
352
12 b&w illus., 3 maps
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
1.35 Pounds (US)
$49.95 USD, £39.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Ahmedabad

Shock City of Twentieth-Century India

In the 20th century, Ahmedabad was India's "shock city." It was the place where many of the nation's most important developments occurred first and with the greatest intensity—from Gandhi's political and labor organizing, through the growth of textile, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries, to globalization and the sectarian violence that marked the turn of the new century. Events that happened there resonated throughout the country, for better and for worse. Howard Spodek describes the movements that swept the city, telling their story through the careers of the men and women who led them.

About the Author

Howard Spodek is Professor of History at Temple University. He is author of The World's History and editor (with Doris Meth Srinivasan) of Urban Form and Meaning in South Asia.

Reviews

"Spodek (Temple Univ.) is a renowned world historian and highly respected specialist in Indian urban history, particularly that of Ahmedabad, which he first visited in 1964. It has been his second home ever since. As a 'shock city,' a term coined by Asa Briggs in 1963 about 1830s Manchester, it contains all the social, ethnic, environmental, and economic problems found in such shock cities through the decades. Based on its textile industry, Ahmedabad is the 'Manchester of India'" Between 1915, when Gandhi settled in its suburbs at his ashram at Sabarmati, until the 1970s, it has been led by a small circle of civic and political leaders, and it is this circle that Spodek focuses on while covering all the major events and movements that have arisen. Part 1 of the book is titled'"The Gandhian Era, 1915-1950,' part 2, "The Westernizing City, 1950-1980," and part 3, 'Creativity and Chaos, 1969-'. The strength of this first-rate, well-illustrated study is its thorough grounding in source material, an intimate knowledge of people and places, and its connections between Ahmedabad and such personalities as Gandhi, Vallabbhai Patel, and Anasuyaben Sarabhia, among a long list of prominent Gujeratis. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Most levels/libraries. — Choice"—R. D. Long, Eastern Michigan University, February 2012

"[T]his is a story well told, a lucid and readable book about an interesting and complex city."—The Hindu

"Lucidly written, beautifully illustrated and meticulously supported with facts and figures, this is an important addition to the academic literature on Gujarat."—Contemporary South Asia

"[A]n important contribution to the urban histories of Asia and a must-read for anyone interested in the history of Ahmedabad and Gujarat  [T]his is a compelling account of Ahmedabad, ably written by a historian whose long engagement with and affection for the city shine through without clouding his intellectual insights. Putting a human face on the city's leading figures who built the city and its institutions, caused or led movements, maintained calm or provoked violence, Spodek takes us on an engrossing rollercoaster ride through Ahmedabad's turbulent and complicated history in the twentieth century...."—H-Asia

"Ahmedabad . . . provides an important contribution to the field as both an examination of a place conspicuously underrepresented in the urban history of the region and as an excellent piece of urban history that not only greatly informs our understanding of South Asian development, but also has application to a number of cities globally."—H-Urban

"Because it is written in such a lucid and lively manner and because it treats so many of the critical themes of twentieth-century Indian history, Ahmedabad is also one of the books I would most strongly recommend to anyone who wants to understand South Asia's recent past."—Business History Review

"Ahmedabad: Shock City of Twentieth-Century India is an important and timely history of a city that has re-emerged at the forefront of debates around India's model of economic growth."—Urban History

"[This book] will be of interest to scholars of urban history, local and national politics, and popular movements in South Asia.Feb. 2014"—JRNL ASIAN STUDIES

"A city of extraordinary economic growth and innovation, horrendous communal violence and appalling poverty; Howard Spodek justifiably calls Ahmedabad a 'shock city' in his . . . book Ahmedabad: Shock City of Twentieth Century India.Winter 2012"—IIAS Newsletter (Intnl Inst Asian Studies)

"The strength of this first-rate, well-illustrated study is its thorough grounding in source material, an intimate knowledge of people and places, and its connections between Ahmedabad and such personalities as Gandhi, Vallabbhai Patel, and Anasuyaben Sarabhia . . . Highly recommended."—Choice

"This excellent study is the culmination of a half-century of research on a city in which Spodek first lived in 1964 and to which he continues to return. Spodek's lovingly told yet critical assessment of Ahmedabad reflects his deep affection for the place and many of its prominent twentieth-century residents."—American Historical Review

"Brings into focus the forces of social, political, economic, and cultural change which have transformed India in the 20th century."—Lynn Hollen Lees, University of Pennsylvania

"A major contribution to the history of modern India and to urban studies in general. . . . A scholar's model for future historical studies of cities, especially those in the developing nations."—Owen M. Lynch, C. F. Noyes Professor Emeritus, New York University
Indiana University Press

9780253355874 : ahmedabad-spodek
Hardback
352 Pages
$49.95 USD

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