The Discovery of India is a non-fiction book penned by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of independent India. He wrote the book when he was imprisoned in the Ahmednagar Fort by the British, from 1942 to 1946, in an attempt to keep him from gaining political support from common people across India. Written in the seclusion of his prison accommodation, the book presents Nehru's love for the country and its rich cultural heritage, through a collection of essays and prose, liberally garnished with historical facts and figures. A celebrated author, Jawaharlal Nehru was awarded the Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian honour in India, in 1955.
The Discovery of India pays respect to the history, culture and philosophy, as viewed by Jawaharlal Nehru. He uses his knowledge of the Vedas, the Upanishads and other textbooks of Indian history and mythology to describe the development of Indian civilisation from the Indus Valley civilisation all the way to the last days of the rule of the British Empire. The book is not considered to be historical evidence per se, but an account of the observations made by an individual about his experience of living in the great country. It focuses on the altruistic and philosophical aspects of the history of India, analysing how it establishes the foundation for the nation to build a glorious future. Nehru dedicated the book to his fellow inmates in Ahmednagar Fort.
This edition of The Discovery of India was published by Penguin India on February 1, 2008. It is available in the English language and can be ordered online in India. The book was reviewed by legendary scientist Albert Einstein, who commented that it helped readers gain an understanding of the magnificent "intellectual and spiritual tradition" of India. This paperback edition of The Discovery of India has 656 pages. Its ISBN 10 number is 0143031031 and its ISBN 13 number is 978-0143031031.