Twenty-Two Yards to Freedom By Boria Majumdar
Over three centuries (1780-2003), India's engagement with cricket has made for a riveting drama. Paradoxical as it mrigorous study of the country's perennial cricket mania. Twenty-Two Yards to Freedom assesses the role of cricket in Indian national life. Majumdar argues that cricket was a means to cross class barriers and had a healthy following even outside the aristocracy and upper middle classes well over a century ago. Indeed, in some ways, the democratization of the sport anticipated the democratization of the Indian polity itself. It also examines the interrelationship between those who patronized and promoted the game and those who played and watched it. The book highlights indigenous cricket traditions in Bengal and the South in addition to those of Mumbai, usually considered the game's home in India, and comments on the early commercialization of the sport in the decades before Independence. From the Parsi capitalists to the BCCI, cricket under the Raj to cricket under Swaraj, from the Maharaja of Natore to Saurav Ganguly, 'Maharaj' of Kolkata, Twenty-Two Yards to Freedom covers the entire gamut. A must-read for cricket aficionados and for all who are interested in the history of contemporary India. ay seem, idealism and intrigue, social mobility and strict stratification are all part of India's cricket story. It is this story that Boria Majumdar recounts in his lucid yet.
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