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The Woman Beside Gandhi is a biography of Kasturba, wife of the Mahatma. Though there are countless references to her in the voluminous works by and about Gandhi, Kasturba remains virtually unknown. And yet it was she who stood up to him, was his teacher in non-violent resistance and the compassionate mainstay of his austerely demanding ashrams. And yet again it was Kasturba, appointed by Gandhi to be the leader of women’s resistance, who by her own example, her speeches and her tireless rounds of towns and villages, motivated women by the thousands to make rapid, radical changes in their restricted personal lives and participate in mass civil disobedience for freedom. Seeing Kasturba go fearlessly to prison in South Africa and several times in India, so inspired and empowered women, that they too went to prison, fighting for their cause. The touching stories of these unknown, unheralded women are here in this book, filling an important vacuum in the world of letters especially as it pertains to women’s emancipation. Three trips to India, meetings with over 200 people who knew Kasturba in person, and a great deal of research through books and places unvisited by other scholars, has gone into the writing of this ground-breaking biography. Sita Kapadia takes the reader with Kasturba, the child bride, and her boy husband from small towns to three continents, through ashrams and prisons. Combining diligent research with engaging interviews in a free-flowing and vibrant narrative, Kapadia shows how bravely and selflessly Kasturba lived her life, unlike anyone else’s in the annals of human history. Gandhian scholar Dennis Dalton calls it a unique and superlative biography.