Return to Innocence - A sojourn through the planet’s last four decades . . . with me

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How does someone who does not know which year he was born in get to decide his destiny?

The book charts the journey of someone who did just that—filmmaker Nila Madhab Panda, who has been telling powerful, thought-provoking stories from rural India through cinema for twenty years. The narrative begins from the birth of Panda in the seventies, a time when his father’s generation struggled for subsistence in farm and village, continues to the young Madhab moving to the city from his obscure hamlet and becoming a globetrotting director, and pauses in the present, the era of Panda’s son, who is an unmistakably urban denizen of the digital age. The stories from Panda’s life and his concerns about the world’s biggest problems are connected by his creative expressions, his films, which use fiction to reflect real-life tragedies.

In describing the worlds and journeys of these three generations, Panda shows how, within his own lifetime of about four decades, there have been colossal transformations in the country and the world, perhaps more than in any other four-decade span before this—headlong progress and its unanticipated consequences for the planet, for all living beings, even for human relationships.

The narrative functions like a time machine, taking the reader back and forth through evocative, cinematic storytelling in powerful and poetic prose, a dramatic combination of storytelling and commentary that is part of the author’s distinctive voice as a filmmaker. And through these colourful, dramatic stories of people, films and journeys, he underscores the criticality of humankind’s most powerful tool—innocence.

  • Paperback: 218 pages
  • Publisher: White Falcon Publishing; 1 edition (2023)
  • Author: Nila Madhab Panda
  • ISBN-13: 9781636408590
  • Product Dimensions:  5.5 x 1 x 8.5 Inches

Indian Edition available on:


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