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Ramachandra Guha (born 1958) is an Indianmarker writer whose research interests have included environmental, social, political and cricket history. He is also a columnist for the newspapers The Telegraph, Khaleej Times, and The Hindustan Times. He is a fellow of Indian Institute of Management Calcutta.

Life and career

Sons and daughters of Mysore S.
Ramaswamy Iyer and their families.
Mysore S.
Ramaswamy Iyer was the first Advocate-General of Mysore and great-grandfather of Ramachandra Guha

Born in Dehra Dunmarker in 1958, Guha studied at The Doon School and St. Stephen's College, Delhimarker. He graduated in Economics with a BA in 1977 and then an MA from the Delhi School of Economics, and did a PhD in Sociology at the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, with a dissertation on the social history of forestry in Uttaranchalmarker, that focused on the Chipko movement. It was later published as The Unquiet Woods. Between 1985 and 2000, he taught at various universities in India, Europe and North America, including the University of California, Berkeleymarker, Yale Universitymarker, Stanford Universitymarker and at Oslo Universitymarker, and later at the Indian Institute of Science. During this period, he was also a fellow of Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin in Germany (1994-95).

Guha then moved to Bangaloremarker, and began writing full time. He served as Sundaraja Visiting Professor in the Humanities at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, in 2003. He is managing trustee of the New India Foundation, a nonprofit body that funds research on modern Indian history.Guha is married to the graphic designer Sujata Kesavan and has two children.

He is the author of "India after Gandhi", published by Macmillan and Ecco in 2007.

In 2000, Guha penned an essay critiquing an article written by writer and activist Arundhati Roy opposing the Narmada Dammarker. Roy espoused the cause of the Narmada Bachao Andolan, a cause Guha is also a supporter of. However, he questioned her expertise in the relevant field and argued that her activities and writings undermined rather than helped the cause. Roy responded in an interview, saying that Guha was cricket historian who had missed the boat.

In 2009, Guha joined several other well-known historians in signing a petition that criticized the functioning of the prestigious Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML) in Delhi. The petition, also signed by such eminent historians as Sumit Sarkar, Nivedita Menon, Nayanjot Lahiri, Mushirul Hasan,Mukul Kesavan Mahesh Rangarajan and Krishna Kumar, alleged that the institution was being run in an inefficient and corrupt fashion. They point out that NMML has discontinued its publication programme, and that the acquisition of manuscripts and oral histories have all but come to a halt.[317809]. In turn, writer and activist Madhu Kishwar, envirometalist Pradeep Kishen and well-known historians Irfan Habib and D.N. Jha have come out in support of NMML and its director Mridula Mukherjee.[317810]

Awards and recognition


  • The Unquiet Woods: Ecological Change and Peasant Resistance in the Himalaya (University of California, Berkeley press; Oxford University Press (OUP)) (1989)
  • This Fissured Land: An Ecological History of India (OUP) (with Madhav Gadgil, 1992)
  • Wickets in the East (OUP) (1992)
  • Social Ecology (OUP) (Editor, with T.N. Madan, 1994)
  • Spin and Other Turns (Penguin) (1994)
  • An Indian Cricket Omnibus (OUP) (Editor, with T.G. Vaidyanathan, 1994)
  • Ecology and Equity (with Madhav Gadgil, 1995) (Penguin)
  • Varieties of Environmentalism: Essays North and South (with Joan Martinez-Alier, 1997)
  • Savaging the Civilized — Verrier Elwin, his tribals and India (University of Chicago Press; OUP)(1999)
  • An Anthropologist Among the Marxists, and other essays (Permanent Black) (2000)
  • Environmentalism: A global history (OUP) (2000)
  • The Picador Book of Cricket (Picador) (Editor, 2001)
  • A Corner of a Foreign Field - An Indian history of a British sport (Picador) (2001)
  • An Indian cricket century (Editor, works of Sujit Mukherjee, 2002)
  • The Last Liberal and Other Essays (Permanent Black, 2004)
  • The States of Indian Cricket (Permanent Black) (2005)
  • How Much Should a Person Consume?: Thinking Through the Environment (University of California, Berkeley Press; Permanent Black) (2006)
  • India after Gandhi: The history of the world's largest democracy (Ecco) (2007)
  • Institutions and Inequalities: Essays in Honour of Andre Beteille (with Jonathan P. Parry)
  • Nature's Spokesman: M. Krishnan and Indian Wildlife (editor, works of M. Krishnan)
  • Nature, Culture, Imperialism: Essays on the Environmental History of South Asia (with David Arnold)


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