My Son’s Inheritance : A Secret History of Lynching and Blood Justice in India – Aparna Vaidik
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My Son’s Inheritance: A Secret History of Lynching and Blood Justice in India is a provocative and disturbing examination of the history of lynching in the country. Aparna Vaidik’s investigation traverses several centuries and offers powerful insights into the phenomenon. She demonstrates how violence is secretly embedded in our myths, folklore, poetry, literature, and language, and is therefore invisible. She delves deep into family history to further illuminate how widespread violence is in Indian society. Framing her narrative as a message to her son, she acquaints him with his ancestors—those who abet and carry out lynching as well as those who are lynched. In this way, her son embodies both the violator and the violated, much like the country in which he will come of age. She lays bare the heritage of violence bequeathed from generation to generation and disabuses us of the myth that non-violence and tolerance are the essence of Indian culture. She argues that the perpetrators of violence are not just the state, the rulers, the police or the army but all of us who, through our silence and indifference, foster and perpetuate violence in India.
My Son’s Inheritance is a groundbreaking exploration of the phenomenon of lynching and the larger culture of violence that invests the social and political fabric of the country.
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