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

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The Complexity, Texture and Excitement of Bangladesh

The Bangladesh Reader: History, Culture, Politics, edited by Meghna Guhathakurta and Willem van Schendel (Durham, London: Duke University Press), 2013; pp xv + 550, Rs 1,412.

In the age of social media which expects you to express anything purposefully in 140 characters, preparing a finely printed compilation of essays, articles and interviews running into 550 pages would be considered adventurous and to expect vast numbers of readers to read it would be being too optimistic. But in spite of the hurdles of width, depth and the sheer size of the volume, it is as illuminating to read, as it is useful.

This volume is part of Duke University’s World Readers and Latin American Readers series covering such diverse geographies and economies as Guatemala and Alaska. The munificence of the Duke University Press must be applauded – it is not every day that a university and its press come up with such a grand and, I daresay, exotic collection.

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