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Untranquil Recollections: The Years of Fulfilment

by Rehman Sobhan SAGE Publications Pvt. Ltd
Pub Date:
Hbk 484 pages
AU$122.00 NZ$125.22
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This book brings together Rehman Sobhan and rsquo;s personal story situated within the historical events of Bangladesh, from its birth as East Pakistan to its evolution as an independent democratic state.


It is a narration of events by the author who lived through some extraordinary phases in the histories of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh and the impact this had on him. His story relates to the life and perspectives of an individual born into a family of relative privilege and educated at elite schools, but moved on to a different trajectory from its intended path and eventually became involved in the political struggles that culminated in the emergence of an independent Bangladesh. The chapters are spread across a wide canvas elaborating his family history and those who played a vital role in his personal or public life.

Families Inherited and Chosen
Growing Up in Calcutta
Darjeeling: School Days in the Shadows of Kanchenjunga
Lahore: Coming of Age among the Chiefs
London: Imagined Realities
Cambridge: The Transformative Years
Dhaka: Life and Times
Dhaka: Adventures in the Private Sector
Dhaka University: Teaching Economics and Learning to Be a Teacher
Dhaka: Personal Encounters of the Close Kind
Exposures to Political Activism at Dhaka University
From Political Economy to Politician Economist
Engagement with the National Struggle
Fulfilment: Witness to the Birth of a Nation
Fulfilment: From Politician Economist to Political Combatant in the Liberation War
Fulfilment: Envoy Extraordinaire
Fulfilment: The Liberation of Bangladesh

A balanced yet rich description of the politics that led up to the genocide….  A fine read…capturing in riveting detail the political, social and human drama of the birth of Bangladesh.

Professor Rehman Sobhan was born in Calcutta on 12 March 1935. He was educated at St. Paulas School, Darjeeling (1942a50), Aitichison College, Lahore (1951a52) and Cambridge University (1953a56) where he was awarded an MA in Economics. He began his working career as the faculty of Economics, Dhaka University in 1957 and retired as Professor of Economics in 1977. He served as Member, Bangladesh Planning Commission (with the rank of a State Minister), in charge of the Divisions of Industry, Power and Natural Resources, and of Physical Infrastructure (1972a74), as Chairman, Research Director, Director General and Emeritus Fellow, BIDS from (1974a93) and as a Visiting Fellow, Queen Elizabeth House, Oxford (1976a79). He was a Member of the Advisory Council of the President of Bangladesh (with the rank of a Cabinet Minister) in charge of the Ministry of Planning and the Economic Relations Division (1991). He was the Executive Director, South Asia Centre for Policy Studies (SACEPS) (2001a05), Visiting Scholar, Initiative for Policy Dialogue, Columbia University (2005a06), Senior Research Fellow, Ash Institute of Democratic Governance, Harvard University (2006a08). He was the founder and Executive Chairman of Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) from 1994a99. Currently, he is the Chairman of CPD.Professor Sobhan has held a number of important professional positions. He was a Member of the Panel of Economists to review the 3rd (1965) and 4th (1970) FYPs of Pakistan; Editor, Pakistan Economic Journal (1963a66) and Editor, Forum, a weekly, (1969a71). He served as Envoy Extraordinary with special responsibility for Economic Affairs, Government of Bangladesh during 1971, as President, Bangladesh Economic Association (1983a85), as a Member, Bangladesh National Commission on Money, Banking and Finance (1987), as a Member, U.N. Committee for Development Planning (1982a86), as a Member, Governing Council of the U.N. University, Tokyo (1986a91), as a Member of the Commission for a New Asia, Kuala Lumpur (1994), as a Member of the Board of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Geneva (1991a97), as Member of the Executive Committee of the International Economic Association (1994a99), as Member of the Group of Eminent Persons appointed by the SAARC Heads of State to review the future of SAARC (1991), as Chairman, South Asia Centre for Policy Studies (1997a2000), as Chairman of the Board of Grameen Bank (1996a2002), as a Member of the BIDS Board of Trustees (2000a03) and a Member of the International Advisory Committee of the Ash Institute, Harvard University. He is currently a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Freedom Foundation, Bangladesh, Member of the Board of the South Asia Centre for Policy Studies, Kathmandu, and Chairman of the Pratichi Trust (Bangladesh) set up by Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen. Prof. Sobhan has also received a number of awards which include the Bangladesh Bank Purushkar (2000) awarded to professionals in the field of economics in Bangladesh and the Bangladesh Shadinata Purushkar (2008), which is the highest civil award in Bangladesh. To indicate the range of his professional interests a full list of books published by him (1968a2008) is attached as Annexure-4. He has also published around 140 articles in professional journals.