Mohandas Gandhi (1869-1948)

In an age of empire and military might, he proved that the powerless had power and that force of arms would not forever prevail against force of spirit

The Mahatma, the Great Soul, endures in the best part of our minds, where our ideals are kept: the embodiment of human rights and the creed of nonviolence. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is something else, an eccentric of complex, contradictory and exhausting character most of us hardly know. It is fashionable at this fin de siecle to use the man to tear down the hero, to expose human pathologies at the expense of larger-than-life achievements. No myth raking can rob Gandhi of his moral force or diminish the remarkable importance of this scrawny little man. For the 20th century--and surely for the...

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