Ants Among Elephants

Sujatha Gidla
Hardback
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Like one in six people in India, Sujatha Gidla was born an untouchable. While most untouchables are illiterate, her family was educated by Canadian missionaries in the 1930s, making it possible for Gidla to attend elite schools and move to America at the age of twenty-six. It was only then that she saw how extraordinary and yet how typical her family history truly was.
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'A vital and illuminating book.' Arundhati Roy

'One of the most significant, and haunting, books about India you'll read.' The Financial Times

Like one in six people in India, Sujatha Gidla was born an untouchable. While most untouchables are illiterate, her family was educated by Canadian missionaries in the 1930s, making it possible for Gidla to attend elite schools and move to America at the age of twenty-six. It was only then that she saw how extraordinary and yet how typical her family history truly was.

In rich, novelistic prose, Ants Among Elephants tells Gidla's extraordinary family story detailing her uncle's emergence as a poet and revolutionary and her mother's emancipation through education. Gidla's is a vital new voice, and one that speaks with intimate familiarity of the social oppression and grinding poverty that is so often poorly understood and represented. In doing so, Gidla captures the story of modern India, told from the bottom up. It's a country full of contradictions, where intercaste marriage is still taboo, and violence against women continues to draw international attention.

'The most striking work of nonfiction set in India since Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo.' Economist

'A remarkable family history... Ants Among Elephants may well be eye-opening not just for non-Indians (who will recoil in righteous horror from the intimate details of caste discrimination) but also for many Indians, for whom the lives of Untouchables take place out of sight.' Tunku Varadarajan, The Wall Street Journal

'The story Gidla recounts is so urgent and affecting that it is easy to overlook the extraordinary literary skill with which she tells it.' Literary Review
 

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ISBN 9781911547204
Publisher Daunt Books
Format Hardback
Publication date 24 May 2018

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