Since 1999

Just like Rajendra Bora Saab (from Jodhpur, now in Jaipur), I had also decided not to buy any more books. But my promise was about books ordered directly from India. I must have ordered scores of books until about 2010 from D.K. Agencies, New Delhi. They found books for me from obscure sources, like Narendra Shrimali's book and sent to me. And then suddenly, the postage rates from India became very high, almost 2 times the cost of the book. I still bought Indian books, but asked my brother or other friends to keep them for me in India.

But then I saw a book on Rajasthani Cinema, I had to have it and today! I wrote to University Book House, Ashish Jain replied, I sent them $30 ($11 book, $19 postage). I am very happy that ordered it.

Rajasthani Cinema: A Critical Study by Dr Rakesh Kumar Goswami (2020),

182 pages, Hard Bound, Black and White, Rs 795. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The author gives us a summary of world cinema, gives us a brief tour of Indian cinema before getting to the subject proper. He introduces Rajasthan and its languages, gives an overall history of Rajasthani Cinema, less than 150 films until 2014. Then follows a detailed filmography (everything except songs), with lots of posters and photos from booklets. Next chapter includes detailed analysis of some landmark films. Lots of references. Then, a very important Annexure Section, filled with biographies and interviews with many important people connected with the Rajasthani Cinema.

On the whole a very good book full of rare information not available elsewhere. I understand MD Soni provided a lot of meticulous information for the book. Thank you very much Soni Saab. Very deservedly, there is a 7-page chapter on MD Soni’s life and his services to the Rajasthani Cinema compilations.

Is there a shortcoming in the book? Yes, there is. It is well-known that Vol 4 (1961-1970), Vol 5 (1971-1980) and Vol 6 (1981-1985) of the world-famous Hindi Film Geet Kosh (HFGK) by Har Mandir Singh ‘Hamraaz’, Bishwanath Chatterjee, and Har Mandir Singh ‘Hamraaz’, respectively, have Geet Kosh type information on many regional films, including Rajasthani. It is customary in academic work (and the book is definitely academic) to include references to all the previous work on the subject and discuss them. Sadly, it has not been done in this book. One can only speculate why that is so.

I would definitely recommend this book for the filmographies and the interviews, but I would recommend getting HFGK volumes 4-6 also for the sake of completeness.

Now You Know!

New j031

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