Great Speeches of Modern India

date Oct 3, 2008
authors Rudrangshu Mukherjee
reading time 1 min
  • Book Title: Great Speeches of Modern India
  • Author: Compiled by Rudrangshu Mukherjee
  • Year written/published: 2007
  • Book Source: here
  • Summary: A collection of 49 speeches by many great personalities of Indian history since the 1885
  • My Comments: The collection of speeches is excellent. I shall not summarise all these speeches into this entry. Hence, i’ll go into each speech individually because they are important to be studied in detail one by one. 
  • Contents page:

Some speeches includes…

  • Lord Curzon - On conserving ancient monuments in 1889
  • Swami Vivekananda - Sisters and brothers of America in 1893
  • Bal gangadhar Tilak - Free is my brithright in 1917
  • Gandhi - Trial Speech in 1922
  • Iqbal - Muslims of India in 1930
  • Nehru - Tryst with Destiny in 1947
  • Godse - Why I killed Gandhi in 1949
  • Satyakit Ray - Education of a film maker in 1982
  • Salman Rushdie - the Fatwa in 1993
  • JRD Tata - Rekindling of enthusiasm in 1982

Some extracts:

from the Preface of the book written by the compiling author… speeches…

Speeches are meant to be spoken - and heard. For this reason, a speech is fundamentally different from other forms of written text, for it is not simply dependant on the words alone… 

on speech writing…

The style of the speeches too changed. Nehru and his contemporaries and almost certainly the generation preceding him has all written their own speeches. This cannot be said for the politicians of the post-Nehru era. Most, if not all, the major political figured from Indira Gandhi onwards had their own team whose members works on the speeches and wrote them.  None of the great orators, during the 2nd WW and the period preceding it, employed speechwriters. Churchill wrote his own speeches and rehearsed them again and again.

on Sharda Prasad who used to write the speeches for Rajiv and Indira Gandhi…

Sharda Prasad was once asked why he, who had seen 2 prime ministers at such close quaters, did not write his memoirs. He reportedly quipped, “A man can become a ghost, but a ghost cannot become a man.”