Reba Som has been an acclaimed author, academic, historian, singer, and a cultural ambassador. In Hop, Skip and Jump, she harnesses her multidisciplinary skills to narrate the many-layered story of her experiences as the wife of an IFS officer.
Travelling abroad for the first time with her career diplomat husband, Himachal Som, as a twenty-two-year-old bride fresh out of college, Reba Som was thrust headlong into an alien universe. Over the next forty years she travelled all over the world with Himachal, negotiating the perks of diplomatic life along with its confounding challenges. Multiple postings, bringing up children, housekeeping, paltry allowances, being part of an incipient rebelliousness that brewed among spouses against the blanket ban imposed by the Ministry of External Affairs on their working abroad, anecdotes and trivia from travel in many countries, observations about multiple societies and cultures – there is little that escapes Reba Som’s keen eye and keener imagination.
At the same time this is also an ardent ‘feminist’ enterprise. She narrates with admirable candour her striving for self-actualization in the shadow of her husband’s career, the tensions within a marriage when partners evolve with their separate identities and interests, and how her academic interests, writing and singing, helped create a discrete space of her own.
A memoir, a travelogue and a potted sociocultural history of an India finding its place in the world all rolled into one, this is an unforgettable chronicle of a remarkable life.
From the Publisher
Hop, Skip and Jump: Peregrinations of a Diplomat's Wife
Om Books International
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Country Of Origin:
25 July 2023
Acclaimed author, academic, historian, singer, and a cultural ambassador, Reba Som was the recipient of the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship in 2000–02 and served as the founding director of ICCR, Kolkata, from 2008 to 2013.Among her several publications are Gandhi, Bose, Nehru and the Making of the Modern Indian Mind (Penguin 2004), RabindranathTagore:The Singer and His Song (Penguin,2009) and Margot: Sister Nivedita of Vivekananda (Penguin Random House, 2017).