ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Reflections of a Steadfast Communist

Red Star over India: As the Wretched of the Earth are Rising - Impressions, Reflections and Preliminary Inferences by Jan Myrdal (Kolkata: Setu Prakashani), 2012; pp 224, Rs 295 (PB), Rs 395 (HB).

Red Star over India is a brilliant compilation of Jan Myrdal’s impressions and reflections of the international communist movement in general and the Maoist movement in ­India in particular, during his visit to the Maoist strongholds of Dandakaranya and while interviewing senior leaders of the Communist Party of India (Maoist) [CPI (Maoist)], including its General Secretary Muppala Lakshmana Rao, alias Ganapathy. The rich experience of Myrdal in observing and participating in almost eight decades of communist history gives proper context to the Maoist movement in India. Throughout the book he rightly asserts that being over 80 years old, he is “intellectually and ­politically marked by both the historical success and the severe defeats of these decades”. This colossal experience and observations of history give these refle­ctions of Myrdal added significance. Unfortunately, there are numerous typographical errors, and, at least in one instance, the author’s instruction to the publisher, in capital letters, to check an “exact other publication” (p 29), inexcusably remains in the final text.

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