Gandhi – My Life is My Message
A Graphic Novel
by Jason Quinn, published 2013
“We must melt the hearts of the Government with love… Remember, we can only win the opponent over by love, never by hate. Hate is the subtlest form of violence. Hatred injures the hater, never the hated.”
This very impressive children’s book is a biography in the form of a graphic novel, which appears to be a very successful genre. I haven’t reviewed many graphic novels on this website, as they often don’t offer much in the way of substantial literature. However, this children’s graphic novel has so much going for it. For starters, the artwork is impressively engaging and beautiful. In addition, the content is very detailed and riveting. I learned much I didn’t know about Gandhi just through reading this short children’s book.
It is so helpful to see that our cultural heroes are not born heroic but learn from their experience. Gandhi is a great example of seeing his own errors and then making changes to his philosophy.
The story that this children’s graphic novel tells is not necessarily a happy one – the amount of violence that occurred and still occurs between Hindus and Muslims is discouraging. Yet the message of Gandhi is one of hope, even when it seems like things will never improve.
I particularly like reading about Gandhi’s wife in this biography. I had no idea until I read the book how much she experienced on behalf of India’s freedom. I think this children’s graphic novel would be a great classroom addition in any study of Gandhi or the history of India.