Frontlist | New edition of historian V N Datta’s ‘Jallianwala Bagh’ releasedFrontlist | New edition of historian V N Datta’s ‘Jallianwala Bagh’ released
on Mar 16, 2021 The New edition of the late historian Vishwa Nath Datta’s 1969 classic “Jallianwala Bagh: A groundbreaking history of the 1919 massacre” is released on Monday, announced by publishing house Penguin. The revised edition, of what is widely considered as one of the first attempts to document the gruesome massacre, now comes with an introduction by his daughter — and a noted historian herself — Nonica Datta, it added. Based on a meticulous exploration of the primary sources and oral testimonies of the survivors and victims of 1919, the author crafts a unique and first-hand narrative of this event and its legacy in the history of modern India and provides a complex picture of the city of Amritsar, where he grew up. “This is a new edition of ‘Jallianwala Bagh’, a classic written by my father, historian VN Datta in 1969. Through a masterly reading of hitherto undiscovered archival sources and oral testimonies, Datta crafts a complex picture of the city of Amritsar, where he grew up; this is a setting for his vivid description of the massacre,” Nonica, who teaches history at Jawahar Lal Nehru University, told PTI.
The Jallianwala Bagh massacre took place in Amritsar (undivided Punjab) during the Baisakhi festival on April 13, 1919, when troops of the British Indian Army under the command of Colonel Reginald Dyer opened fire at a crowd of people holding a pro-independence demonstration, leaving scores dead. “Even after the 100th year of commemoration, his work becomes all the more immediate. As a historian writing in the 1960s, his crafting of an intricate narrative and analysis of 1919, uncomfortably entangled with local and national histories, is no mean feat.
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