cover image This My People

This My People

Rizzoli, Tatla Dar Singh, Madanjeet Singh. Rizzoli International Publications, $50 (156pp) ISBN 978-0-8478-1153-3

Published to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Nehru's birth, this volume of photographs taken in the 1940s is a study in contrasts: haunting pictures of refugees give way to shots of smiling children, farmers, miners and fishermen at work, or young women playing on a swing. In the aftermath of the rioting that broke out following Indian independence in 1947, author/photographer/statesman Singh mounted an exhibition of the 96 black-and-white photos seen here, a ``Peace Exhibition'' presenting a look at ``life in the Punjab as it used to be before it became the scene of communal strife.'' This collection of evocative, carefully executed portraits of India's citizenry--seen through Singh's respectful, sensitive lens--is a unique, evenhanded view of India as it was some 50 years ago. (Apr.)