CHENNAI A BIOGRAPHY
V. Sriram takes us through various aspects of the city’s history from the time when it was just a set of scattered villages, through the years of the Portuguese, Dutch, and British, to the (disputed) date of founding of the modern city, the debates surrounding its two names, the institutions, systems, and structures that were built by its rulers (from the Cholas to the Vijayanagar kings to the nawabs of Arcot and the British), the Dravidian politics that came out of the Self-Respect Movement, arguments and riots over the imposition of Hindi, and a lot else besides. In addition to its history, he delves into the city’s delectable food, culture, music, dance, and cinema. Rounding off this portrait, he looks at the city as a powerhouse of education, medicare, heavy engineering, automobiles, leather goods, and software.
He shows us what makes Chennai a thriving city, one that effortlessly combines the old and the new, and pulses with life, energy, and opportunities—all attributes of a grand city.
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