Gandhi and the Unspeakable
By: James W. Douglass
Catholic Press Association Book Award: Catholic Social Teaching (2nd Place)
"Elegant . . . More than a fresh look at historical circumstances, its spiritual spelunking into the depravity of unchecked political power."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"For those already familiar with Gandhi's remarkable achievements, for those who have drawn inspiration from his nonviolent vision, and even for those simply looking for an introduction to Gandhi's thought, this book provides a compelling, if disturbing, look at his final experiment with truth: his death."--The Englewood Review of Books
"Well argued, documented and very revealing."--Arun Gandhi, President, Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute
"Deeply disturbing and profoundly illuminating . . ."--Richard Falk, Milbank Professor of International Law Emeritus, Princeton University
"A necessary book about a necessary human being."--James Martin, SJ, author, My Life with the Saints
"I heartily recommend this book."--Kathy Kelly, Voices for Creative Nonviolence
In 1948, at the dawn of his country's independence, Mohandas Gandhi, father of the Indian independence movement and a beloved prophet of nonviolence, was assassinated by Hindu nationalists during a prayer meeting in New Delhi. Ostensibly the conspirators were enraged by Gandhi's efforts to promote reconciliation between Hindus and Muslims. But were they also abetted by elements of the new Indian state whose power was threatened by Gandhis radical vision?
Following the theme of his previous study of the JFK assassination, James Douglass shows how those who conspired to kill Gandhi hoped to destroy a compelling vision of peace, nonviolence, and reconciliation. In tracing the story of Gandhi's early "experiments with truth" in South Africa, Douglass shows how Gandhi had early on confronted and overcome the fear of death. And, as with the case of JFK's death, he shows why this story matters today: what we can learn from Gandhi's simple truth and its opposition to the powers of his time.
James W. Douglass, a scholar and peace activist, is the author of many books, including JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters, widely acclaimed as one of the most important books ever written on the subject. He lives in Birmingham, Alabama.