‘An indispensable reading for understanding the aspirations and struggles of India’s marginalized millions.’
– Braj Ranjan Mani, author of Debrahmanising History and Knowledge and Power: A Discourse for Transformation
‘This book … shows how new philosophical and ideological issues were brought into play by the Dalitbahujan intellectuals and masses in a short period of seven years. It also shows how the Dalitbahujan movement is bold enough to face varied challenges including attacks and court cases.’
– Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd, author and former Director, Centre for the Study of Social Exclusion and Inclusive Policy, Maulana Azad National Urdu University
‘Forward Press editorials had been always inspirational to the exploited Bahujan readers and intellectuals. We welcome this book with all enthusiasm and pleasure.’
– Gail Omvedt and Bharat Patankar, authors and activists
We stated up front that FORWARD Press, the bilingual English and Hindi monthly magazine launched in 2009, was to be a platform to give voice to India’s “aspiring millions”, more specifically the silenced majority Bahujans. The expectation, ironically by the Bahujan readers, was that as founder and editor-in-chief I would write most of the major stories. Why don’t you write more often, I would be asked in those early years. My response, besides reiterating the raison d’etre of FORWARD Press, was “I write all the monthly editorials”.
What pleasantly surprised me was the numbers who faithfully read my monthly editorial titled Forward Thinking. For those who know me, one thing they know is that I am not a minimalist. Yet, month after month for seven years of FORWARD Press’ print life, I had to say what I had to say within the straitjacket of around 550 words – never less, rarely more. As a poet I know the constraints of form exert a discipline designed to extract more quality from less quantity. Less is more! In this case, you be the judge of that.
When this collection of my FORWARD Press editorials, editorial essays and other contributions was conceived, I first thought I would just publish extracts from my editorials to highlight what we mean by “Forward Thinking”. However, as I read through editorial after editorial I realized that these nuggets were embedded in their context and to extract them would render them lifeless. It would be as if I were to extract someone’s heart and say, here is the heart of this person!
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