Pankaj Mishra, Age of Anger: A History of the Present
The rise of Trump, the Modi-led ‘Saffron revolution’ in India, whose features, inter alia, include a rabid vigilantism to protect the sanctity of cows and an economic model based on deregulation and privatization, the emergence of ISIS and its glee for sadistic violence, Brexit and right-wing political movements in Europe seem to share nothing in common and have different political, social and economic roots, but for Pankaj Mishra these bewildering political developments are reflective of an era, which he characterizes as ‘Age of Anger’. Age of Anger is a manifestation of a world in which ‘individuals trained to believe in a lofty notion of personal freedom and sovereignty is confronted with a reality that cancels it’. This not only leads to ‘gratuitous murderer and paranoid insurgency’, but also provides germane ground for virulent nationalism and a cult for Nitzschean superman. To make sense of the resentment prevalent among the people, Pankaj Mishra takes a broad historical sweep with the aim of scouring similarities in today’s world and a world gone by.