Saturday, February 12, 2011
2011 is the 20th anniversary of India’s economic reforms.
An important aspect of India’s economic growth during these two decades is the pivotal role women have played in guiding the destinies of business conglomerates.
This is inadequately acknowledged in the narrative of India's growing economic might.
Sudha Menon’s book Leading Ladies: Women who inspire India (Volume One) addresses this lacuna.
A veteran business journalist in India, Menon's book is a collection of pen profiles of 15 women leaders in contemporary India. A majority of the profiles are of business leaders.
Most of the women are public figures and a fair bit about their professional achievements and personal preferences is known and regularly documented in the Indian media.
What Menon succeeds to do with each of the 15 women in her collection is to peel away their public persona to reveal the true woman.
While retelling the stories of their rise to fame and power, the author also manages to focus upon their vulnerable moments, their uncertainties, their failures and their resolve to carry on, undaunted and perhaps more determined.
It’s this combination of the known and the lesser known aspects of their lives that makes each of these profiles interesting.
Menon is careful not to be intrusive when discussing and divulging the private lives of these women.
With any such collection, one always gets a feeling that someone less deserving has replaced someone more deserving. Hopefully, there will be more volumes in this series.