Overview for In Freedom's Quest: A Study of the Life and Works of M. N. Roy (Volume I)
M.N. Roy (1887-1954) was a unique figure of the 20th century who took a leading part in revolutionary movements in four continents. Having joined the underground revolutionary movement in Bengal at the age of eighteen he tried with others to organize an armed insurrection against the British during the first world war. When this attempt failed he went in search of arms to Indonesia, Japan, Korea, China and the United States and eventually landed in Mexico. Here he founded the Communist Party of Mexico in 1919. Called by Lenin to Moscow he rapidly became the most outstanding non-western personality in the Communist International, founded the emigre Communist Party of India at Tashkent in 1920, and was a very close colleague of Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin and Stalin. A member of the Presidium and Executive of the Comintern he was sent to China to guide the Chinese Communist Party in 1927. Disagreeing with the extreme left sectarian policy of the Comintern, he broke with that body in 1928. In 1930 he returned secretly to India, was arrested and sentenced to twelve years rigorous imprisonment which was reduced on appeal to six years.
After his release he worked for some time in the Congress, but later formed the Radical democratic Party which campaigned against Fascism and supported the anti-fascist war. In 1946 he founded the Indian Renaissance Institute, and developed the philosophy of Radical Humanism. In 1952 he met with a serious accident, and after three attacks of cerebral thrombosis, died ten minutes before midnight on January 25, 1954.
A Magnum opus in four volumes, the first two volumes had been out of print for some time. This is the revised edition of the first volume; the second will shortly follow. The third and the fourth volumes (in two parts), recently published, are readily available.