Redefining Humanism: Selected Essays of D.P. Mukerji

edited by Srobona Munshi

First published in 2009

2012 (second edition)


9.5 x 6.25 inches

vi + 110 pages

ISBN: 978-93-82381-07-5

Rs 200


Written during a period of tumult and gestation in India’s history, the essays in this book provide an intellectual’s serious commentary on nascent nationhood. What makes this collection interesting is not just its historical value, but also its very evident contemporary relevance. Rare is the mind that can look critically at the present and read available signs to organize and project a picture of the future. Rarer still is the ability to pinpoint the exact issues that will define the grounds of national debate over the next half century. Written during the 1930s and 40s, these essays view problems of communal division, economic disparity, social injustice, neocolonialism and disunity in the Left with both an intellectual and a human eye. Mukerji sets forth a new kind of humanism, reflecting an understanding of troubled times and indicating ways of possible resolution.

Dhurjati Prasad Mukerji (1894–1961) was a major social scientist of the country. He was Professor of Economics and Sociology at Lucknow University from 1949 to 1954 (having started teaching there in 1922), and then Professor of Economics at Aligarh Muslim University from 1954 to 1959. A man of great erudition, his interests were so wide-ranging that he might have said, with Bacon, ‘I have taken all knowledge to be my province.’ Apart from being a social scientist, Mukerji was a novelist, essayist and critic of note in his mother tongue, Bengali. He was a connoisseur of the arts, especially of music, on which he wrote several books, one co-authored with Tagore. His other publications include Personality and the Social Sciences, Basic Concepts in Sociology, Modern Indian Culture and Diversities.

Srobona Munshi taught for many years in the Department of English, University of Calcutta. She has researched in Oxford on the seventeenth-century English poet Thomas Carew and later, in Bielefeld, Germany, on Walt Whitman. She has published numerous articles on British and American poetry.