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V.S. Srinivasa Sastri: A Liberal Life

This book explores the Indian tradition of liberalism through a critical intellectual biography of Valangaiman Sankaranarayana Srinivasa Sastri (1869–1946).

Vineet Thakur
23 June 2023

A notable politician, diplomat and educationist in colonial India, Sastri was a founding member of the National Liberal Federation and was one of the leading liberals — often dismissed as ‘a body of sycophants and self-seekers’ — of the post-1918 period of Indian pre-independence history. Through Sastri, the book shines a light on the contributions of liberals in Indian political history and challenges the convenient binaries in Indian historiography.

Examining the role that liberals like Sastri played in bridging the gap between the officials and the nationalists, it traces the practice of liberal politics in the post-1918 period of Indian nationalist struggle and the broader contours of Indian liberalism. Accessible, comprehensive and scholarly, this book will be of great interest to scholars and researchers of Indian history, especially the nationalist movement, political thought, and South Asian studies.

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