I do not remember when or where I met Professor Amalendu Guha (AG) for the first time, though this should have been probably some time in the late s or. (Amalendu Guha, ). I. Prominent Marxist historian, revolutionary, poet and a litterateur from. Assam – Dr Amalendu Guha – passed away at the age of 91 in. Amalendu Guha is the author of Planter Raj To Swaraj ( avg rating, 9 ratings, 0 reviews, published ), Planter Raj to Swaraj – Freedom Struggle &.
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Guha further contributed to the debate with a substantial reply and a summing up. The memory of those visits is painful.
I cannot even begin to describe the impact the typescript had on me as I read it, fascinated and obsessed to the exclusion of almost everything else over the next four days. Markedly an optimist, for him poetry was one form of public salutation. I particularly recall his kind comments when I delivered the annual Sakharam Ganesh Deuskar lecture at that Centre.
Amalendu Guha – Wikipedia
When we met it was evident that he knew about me a bit. He touched upon numerous historical fields — huha making pioneering or important contributions. These ranged from the pre-feudal stage to advanced production in the sub-Himalayan highlands, and from slash-and-burn cultivation to settled agriculture. Shaheed Bina’s blood is still alive on the grass of Naliapool, Our oath still cries out for revenge.
Of these I now speak. He also taught briefly at the Delhi School of Economics during the years During my years with Economic and Political Weeklywhen AG was with the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, whenever I happened to visit or pass through the city, I invariably spent time with him and other Assamese friends in the city, and with some of his colleagues at the Centre.
Editorial – edit epw. In this day and age, however, one finds most intellectuals unwilling to make the commitment to a life of struggle and sacrifice that Guha and some of his peers did. Guha did not get a job in the Universities of Gauhati and Calcutta in spite of his qualifications and publications.
Byduring his Intermediate Wmalendu days, Guha had already started to see himself as a communist.
The poem ends with this riveting line: In the first place, his location and his life experience in Assam was a major factor. A comment, if suitable, may be selected for publication in the Letters pages of EPW. There was petty commodity production among self-cultivating peasants in the Brahmaputra valley, artisanal production was best preserved in its pre-capitalist form in the Assam hills and plains, and advanced forms of capitalist production under foreign capitalist auspices in the tea plantations.
Go well, friend, go in peace. Instead of taking for granted that the intrusion of industrial capitalism into colonial India ipso facto meant the destruction of indigenous textile industry, he diligently reconstructed the data on the supply of raw material, i. Very few historians in India had the advantage Amalend Guha enjoyed in this regard, particularly in respect of understanding agrarian history.
The second formative influence was the political climate of the s and akalendu in eastern India when Guha, as a young man, was deciding the trajectory of his life. Despite the well deserved though mildly administered admonishment I received, I continued to be in the good books of AG; his goodwill and affection did not waver.
Planter Raj to Swaraj: He made an attempt to estimate handloom production by estimating raw-cotton production, reduced by the volume of exports and consumption in weaving factories The kind of dual consciousness that Guha talks about — one national and one regional amaldndu that all Indians supposedly have — cannot be guaranteed all the time.
Guha amalrndu paid that price and an important part of his academic life, from towas spent in Darrang College, Tezpur. Although he formally terminated his membership of the Party aroundhe continued to be an active participant in the Left movement in Bengal and Assam. He was a loner: Remaining true to his rationalist outlook, he had willed in that his bodily amalendj should be handed over to Gauhati Medical College for scientific research.
Many historians learned from him, though they were never formally his students in any institution. Thus it was that I resigned from the University and left Guwahati and Assam — for good, as I then thought — in Decemberto join Economic and Political Amalenru in Bombay as a member of its editorial staff.
That is why his death marks the end of an era. Gopalan sometime inin Kolara, my home town see my article on the editorial page of The HinduApril 19, EPW looks forward to your comments.
He bravely faced the loneliness of being a pioneer as well as exclusion from employment in the universities of Gauhati and Calcutta as a communist and a political suspect. As a historian, Guha was primarily known for his work Planters Raj to Swaraj: He was also inquisitive about my years in South Africa, politically inquisitive unlike most other Indians, who were only interested in knowing if I had met Nelson Mandela.
His forays into Assam’s history established him as one of India’s foremost economic historians. Writing this in mid, I cannot but reflect on the world that that typescript, indeed that tattered briefcase, represented.
Subscribers amzlendu login to access full text of the article. But it was certainly neither wasted nor inactive.
The few obituaries on Professor Guha that have appeared in Indian journals have often referred to him as a Marxist historian. It came about thus.
Amalendu Guha (): Lifelong revolutionary, peoples’ historian, life-affirming poet
Breaking up of India would be a terrible dream for this generation. The third aspect of his intellectual life was a creative engagement with the social and political life of the common people in Assam through poetry.
From that it was an easy transition to membership of gyha Communist Party of India in This engagement was evident in the academic research we have cited above, but its poetic expression also demands our attention.