By Haider A. Khan, Book on Liberation movement of Bangladesh. Published by Katha Prakash in Bangladesh

Based on extensive historical documents and interviews, it is the most complete historical narrative and analysis of the great mass movements that led to the liberation of Bangladesh. Prof. Khan is the Distinguished University Professor in Josef Korbel School of International Studies at University of Denver, USA. He has also been an advisor to the UN and Arab Trade and Human Development.

In this book Prof. Khan develops a somewhat novel theory of semiotics by going beyond Bakhtin, the Prague School and post-structuralism. He also develops a new theory of mass movements by refining Badiou's ontology of events. Prof. Khan offers a dynamic ontological theory that he has named a "Dynamic Eventualization Theory". Here are some comments on this important book by some leading scholars:

Haider Khan's commendable work on the history of the Bangladesh liberation movement is an extremely valuable contribution to the literature commemorating the centenary year of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the 50th anniversary of the emergence of Bangladesh. Its provides a highly informative and analytical account, drawing on extensive research, on the history and political dynamics of the birth of Bangladesh. Its coverage of the historic upsurge leading to the fall of the Ayub regime is particularly insightful.

Rehman Sobhan

Chairman, Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD), Dhaka

When the Earth Trembled is a powerful, inspiring and illuminating account of the Bangladesh

Haider Khan has captured vividly and with great sensitivity the human tragedy caused by religious intolerance. He draws some important lessons for the younger generation about how to design humane and democratic institutions to resolve future conflicts more peacefully.

Erik Thorbecke

Professor Emiritus, Graduate School, Cornell University.

Former H.E. Babcock Professor of Nutritional Science and Economics

Professor Haider Khan is a multidisciplinary prolific writer. His canvas of creativity is not only expansive but also aesthetically pleasing. This book on the emergence of Bangladesh placed within the theoretical construct of polyphonic revolutionary process is simply captivating. The way Professor Khan put struggling people first in this pioneering study on Bangladesh revolution should be celebrated by all who are engaged in multidisciplinary research.

Prof. Dr. Atiur Rahman

Bangabandhu Chair Professor, Dhaka University

Former Governor, Bangladesh Bank

When the Earth Trembled is a powerful, inspiring and illuminating account of the Bangladesh liberation movement. Haider Khan's gripping narrative describes in rich detail the multifaceted actions and interactions of political leaders (above all, Mujibur Rahman), student activists, and militant workers and peasants which culminated in unified brave support for independence. His analysis of how these diverse activities coalesced is a revealing guide to the study of popular movements and to their potential now.

Richard W. Miller

Hutchinson Professor in Ethics and Public Life Emeritus,

Department of Philosophy, Goldwin Smith Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 USA

"Haider Khan has produced a major study of the history of Bangladesh, from the inception of the nation to the present day. It is a tour de force, a must read for anyone interested in Bangladesh and the region as a whole."

Jan Svejnar

James T. Shotwell Professor of Global Political Economy

Director, Center on Global Economic Governance

School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University

When the Earth Trembled is a fascinating discussion on the rise and ambiguous achievements of the Bangladesh Liberation Movement. Professor Haider A. Khan tells a metastory by referring to multiple stories and accounts of the same events. While this metastory is also about martyrs and heroes and the moments of despair and cowardice, it involves developing the concept of "polyphonic prose-poetry of revolutionary mass movements". Although When the Earth Trembled highlights the domestic, internal contradictions as primary and determinant, it sees the dynamic of the Bangladeshian developments as interwoven with the wordwide aspirations of 1968. It is these tensions, the idea of the Eventualizing Dynamics, and the ultimate future-orientation that make the book so rewarding.

Heikki Patomaki

Distinguished Professor, University of Helsinki

"In those times of liberation 'to be young was very heaven' says Haider Khan, after the great romantic poet William Wordsworth. Khan manages to render that heavenly feeling in an elegant historical narrative interweaved with literary theory, philosophy and social and political theory, with a view to advising today's young people on how to 'appeal to heaven' in their turn."

Gilbert Achcar

Professor, SOAS, University of London

The author is both a social scientist and a literary theorist with several books of poetry and literary criticism to his credit. Using the most recent methodological approaches of post-postcolonial historiography, Professor Khan extends the literary theory of Bakhtin, and offers a post-Badiou philosophical methodology to "events" and the dynamics of "eventualization" in this book. The approach allows the author to overcome shallow postmodern relativism in a nondogmatic manner. Deftly combining historical processes with a vivid participant-observer's recollection and drawing upon vast literary resources from both Europe and Asia, this book brings to life the never-ending world-wide struggle for freedom. Offering a concise analytical history of the struggles for liberation of the people of Bangladesh, Dr. Khan's book will serve as a guide for future generations of scholars and social activists everywhere engaged in theory and practice of democratic movements.

Hooshang Amirahmadi, PhD

Distinguished Service Professor, Rutgers University

Senior Associate Member, Oxford University

President, American Iranian Council

"This book is a timely contribution to deepen our understanding of the historical, cultural and social dimensions of development challenges of Bangladesh as the nation celebrates the Golden Jubilee of its founding from the embers of the struggles for its independence. Professor Haider Khan is indeed the right person to pen such a book both due to his personal connections with the liberation struggles and the breadth of his scholarship in the fields of political economy of development, macroeconomic models, his command of language, literature and music, and a deep human understanding of solidarity and friendship among people of different cultures, languages and identities."

Dr PB Anand

Professor of Public Policy and Sustainable Development

Interim Head of the Division of Peace Studies and International Development

Faculty of Management, Law and Social Sciences

University of Bradford

Social scientist, artist, internationalist and patriot, Professor Haider Khan's concise analytical account of Bangladesh's national liberation movement captures its life and death struggles for freedom, culminating half a century ago. His tome should also contribute to efforts of patriots and friends of Bangladesh to improve its people's wellbeing. Khan's analytical insights are also likely to catalyze debates relevant to the times we live in.

Jomo Kwame Sundaram, former UN Assistant Secretary-General and emeritus professor

Wassily Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers of Economic Thought in 2007

This is undoubtedly a "Polyphonic Revolutionary" book able to provide a profound comprehension of one of the most important liberation struggles that took place during the century.

Prof. Khan inquires on the Bangladesh Liberation Movements employing novel theoretical tools that he develops. He succeeds in providing an exhaustive image of the process as a whole, suggesting that the Earth is still trembling.

This is not a historical book solely. Following Cicero's locution "historia lux veritatis et magistra vitae", it contains relevant and forward-looking lessons useful for future revolutionary movements.

Francesco Schettino

Research Professor University of Naples II,

University of Campania L. Vanvitelli Department of Law

Leave a Comment

Recent Posts