If his political dream was in some sense a failure, so too was his dream of an India cleansed of the age-old inequities of caste and prejudice, and yet uncorrupted by modern technology and industry. He imagined a country where countless Indian peasants wove their own clothes and tilled their own land, without what he considered the ruinous effects of modernity. But after his death, history passed him by: his great disciple, Jawaharlal Nehru, was an ardent socialist, and by the 1950s Nehru's five-year plans were turning India into an industrial state–and eventually, a nuclear state. Meanwhile, the iniquities of class and gender that he had so loathed persisted, even into the 21st century. Yet Gandhi had to aspire as high as he did to achieve what he did; indeed he won triumphs for India that less idealistic leaders would never have dreamed possible. No
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