Clem Seecharan’s forthcoming book, From Ranji to Rohan: Cricket and Indian Identity in Colonial Guyana 1890s-1960s (Hansib Publications, December 2009) is already drawing the attention of historians and cricket fans. From the late 19th century onwards, cricket was central to the culture of the British West Indies. By the 1890s, a small Indian middle class in British Guyana (present-day Guyana) began to develop and advance their sense of belonging to the region. Seecheram “explores the role of cricket in shaping Indo-Guyanese identity, from the example set by Prince Ranjitsinhji, or Ranji, to the seminal achievements of V. A. Veerasawmy and Chatterpaul Doosha Persaud.” vIn his recent commentary, “New book validates cricket’s role in West Indian identity,” Sir Ronald Sanders calls From Ranji to Rohan a superbly written book. The following is taken from his review:
Seecharan’s use of the English Language is as graceful as it is descriptive and his research is meticulous in the proven manner of his previous publications. He calls on the work of a host of experts in almost every cricketing nation, among them John Arlott, CLR James, and Sir Hilary Beckles. It is a book about cricket, and yet it is more than that. It is also a book about how Indians in Guyana established their West Indian citizenship by staking a claim for places first in their national teams and then in the West Indian team.
A distinguished Caribbean historian, Clem Seecharan teaches Caribbean studies and is head of the Caribbean Studies Program at London Metropolitan University. His many works include Bechu: “Bound Coolie” Radical in British Guiana, 1894-1901, India and the Shaping of the Indo-Guyanese Imagination: 1890-1920, Indians in British Guiana 1919-1929, Sweetening “Bitter Sugar”: Jock Campbell, the Booker Reformer in British Guiana 1934-1966, and Muscular Learning: Cricket and Education in the Making of the British West Indies in the Late 19th Century.
See review by Sir Ronald Sanders at http://www.caribbeannetnews.com/news-18083–6-6–.html
This book may be pre-ordered at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ranji-Rohan-Cricket-Identity-Colonial/dp/1906190275