Sima Saigal, "The Second World War and North East India: Shadows of Yesteryears" (Routledge, 2022)


Sima Saigal's The Second World War and North East India: Shadows of Yesteryears (Routledge, 2022) discusses the untold story of North East India's role during the Second World War and its resultant socio-economic and political impact. It goes beyond standard campaign histories and the epicentre of the Kohima-Imphal battlefields to the Brahmaputra and Surma Valley of Assam--the administrative and political hub of the region, where decisions on the allied war efforts were deliberated and effected right from the outset of the War. What happened in the entire region during the intervening years from 1939? What did the war mean for the people of Assam? How were resources from the region mobilized for the global war effort and how did people adapt, co-opt and survive during these tumultuous years? What was the response of the nationalist and provincial political leaders to the challenges and demands of war? How did the crisis of the 1942 war impact the region? 

First of its kind, this book investigates hitherto unanswered questions to offer an understanding of contemporary Assam and the North East, including discussions on the complexity of issues such as terrain, migration, taxation, profiteering, inflation, famine and food grain trade.

With its lucid style and rich archival material, this volume will be essential for scholars and researchers of history, the Second World War, South Asian history, politics and international relations, colonial studies, sociology and social anthropology, and North East India studies as well as to the interested general reader.

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Ari Barbalat

Ari Barbalat holds a PhD in International Relations from the University of California in Los Angeles. He lives in Toronto with his family.

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