Gandhi, Great Soul

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9780395771792: Gandhi, Great Soul

A biography of Mahatma Gandhi, whose mission in life was to help the 350 million people of India free themselves from British rule.

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About the Author:

Formerly a school teacher, John B. Severance now writes full time. He lives in Savannah, Georgia.

From Booklist:

Gr. 6^-9. Severance does a fine job of covering both the breadth and depth of Gandhi's life. He begins with an introduction to Gandhi's message and gives a brief overview of the mahatma's personal evolution as well as India's external and internal struggles. He then chronicles Gandhi's life as an upper-middle-class Indian boy, who went on to be educated in British schools. Gandhi's loyalty to the British Empire eroded as he faced discrimination in South Africa, where he worked as a lawyer, and government opposition in his native India. Severance details Gandhi's philosophy of satyagraha, or peaceful resistance, which led to independence for India and later to the U.S. civil rights movement. A crisp, clean format featuring many black-and-white photographs makes the book inviting, but the text can be dense and, on occasion, may derail young people who are not reading up to grade level. The portrait of Gandhi offered here is almost entirely positive, although Severance does matter-of-factly mention some issues in his personal life that have been controversial, for instance, the fact that his sons felt they were poorly educated, and Gandhi's refusal to allow his dying wife penicillin because it would be administered through a hypodermic needle. Severance traveled to India to help capture the flavor of the country, and this firsthand touch shows in a book that libraries will find an attractive and informative addition. Ilene Cooper

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Severance, John B.
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