How was everyday life for children long ago? Did they have pets? Did foreign students feel homesick?
Imagination takes off from carefully researched fad to create ten fascinating stories of children from times past, panning India's history from around 3500 SCE onward. Alongside are interesting bits of information. Finely etched images come together in collages to illustrate each story. A perky ant leads the trail through a very visual activity section that makes tracking history so much fun!
T.V. Padma did post-doctoral research in Chemical Environment Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, USA. Her poems have been published in India, the USA and the UK, and were nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She has contributed children's stories to Indian and foreign magazines, and has written two series of books for children.
As a child, I often wondered what everyday life was like for people who lived long ago. I had a number of questions that my teachers could not answer. What sort of government did the people of the Indus Valley have? Were foreign students who attended Nalanda University ever homesick? Were the children of Greek soldiers who married Indian women teased because of their mixed descent?
Some questions can be answered by doing research. Some cannot be answered this way, although one can begin with facts and end by imagining what may have gone on in people's minds. This book is a combination of fantasy and fact. In these stories, I try to answer some of the questions I once wondered about, paying attention to historical accuracy while allowing my imagination to conjure up characters.
Only a very thick book could contain stories that cover all of India's history. I have not attempted to do this. Instead, I have chosen certain periods that awoke meaningful questions in my mind and will, I hope, do the same in the minds of my readers.
My research for this book took years, and led me to many libraries where I met helpful staff: public libraries in Gloucester Point and Yorktown, USA, the libraries at the College of William and Mary and Johns Hopkins University, USA, and at Lancaster University and Manchester University, UK. I owe a debt to the historians whose works I read from cover to cover, listed in the reference section. My editors Radhika, Sandhya and Deeya provided many useful comments and suggestions and found an excellent illustrator. I thank them and the staff at Tulika for their time, effort and enthusiasm. I am grateful to the two doctoral students of history, Aparna and Bhavani, for their feedback on manuscript.
No book can be completed without the help and support of friends family, and I would like to thank some people in particular: my mother, who grew up during the British Raj and actually experienced plague scares, like Sharanjit, when she was a schoolgirl; my father, who did some of what Kannan does in the last story and whose participation in the freedom struggle will always amaze me; my yoga teacher Shri T. Krishnamacharya, who taught me to respect my country's culture; my nephew, Tarun, who encouraged me to write historical fiction; my sister, who studied history, and checked the information in this book; my brothers who gave me my earliest memories of polo and loved it nearly as much as Mumtaz; and my colleague, Rainer, to whom this book is dedicated, for his interesting ideas about history and his admiration for Gandhi.
|From the Author||4|
|The Hunt (circa 3500 BCE )||7|
|Footloose in the City (circa 2300 BCE)||13|
|A Question of Belonging (circa 129-160 CE)||21|
|To Follow a Dream (circa 319-540 CE)||28|
|A Westward Journey (circa 606-647 CE )||34|
|The Storm (circa 697-917 CE)||41|
|The Forbidden Temple (circa 700-900 CE)||47|
|Boat Song (circa 907-1044 CE)||55|
|For Love of a Game (circa 1560-1605 CE )||60|
|Checkmate (circa 1940 CE)||67|
Item Code: NAH407 Author: T. V. Padma Cover: Paperback Edition: 2005 Publisher: Tulika Publishers ISBN: 8188733326 Language: English Size: 9.0 inch x 6.5 inch Pages: 96 (Through out B/W Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 200 gms