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At the age of eighteen a shy and timid Mohandas Gandhi leaves his home in Gujarat for a life on his own At forty five a confident and fearless Gandhi ready to boldly lead his country to freedom returns to India What transforms him? The law The Man before the Mahatma is the first biography of Gandhi’s life in the law It follows Gandhi on his journey of self discovery during his law studies in Britain his law practice in India and his enormous success representing wealthy Indian merchants in South Africa where relentless attacks on Indian rights by the white colonial authorities cause him to give up his lucrative representation of private clients for public work—the representation of the besieged Indian community in South Africa As he takes on the most powerful governmental economic and political forces of his day he learns two things that unifying his professional work with his political and moral principles not only provides him with satisfaction it also creates in him a strong powerful voice Using the courtrooms of South Africa as his laboratory for resistance Gandhi learns something else so important that it will eventually have a lasting and worldwide impact a determined people can bring repressive governments to heel by the principled use of civil disobedience Using materials hidden away in archival vaults and brought to light for the first time The Man before the Mahatma puts the reader inside dramatic experiences that changed Gandhi’s life forever and have never been written about—until now

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