Malankara World

Lighted to Lighten: The Hope of India

By Alice B. Van Doren


These chapters are written with no claim to their being an accurate representation of life in all India. That India is a continent rather than a country is a statement so often repeated that it has become trite. To understand the details of girl-life in all parts of this continent would require a variety of experience which the present writer cannot claim. This book is written frankly from the standpoint of one who has spent fifteen years in the South, and known the North only from brief tours and the acquaintance which reading can give.

For help in advice and criticism thanks are due to friends too numerous to name; especial mention, however, should be made of the kindness of three Indian critics who have read the manuscript: Miss Maya Das of the Y.W.C.A., Calcutta, Mr. Chandy of Bangalore, and Mr. Athiseshiah of Voorhees College, Vellore.


"If there were no Christian College in India, the foreshadowings of a great Tomorrow would demand its creation. It is needed:

(1) for training native leadership in this age when all India is demanding Indian leadership along all lines, and is impatient of foreign control.

(2) for developing Christian workers for the multitudes in India who are turning to Christianity and need care and shepherding in schools and in all phases of daily life.

(3) for the education of those who will be the homemakers of their country, that the stamp of Christianity may be upon the minds and lives of mothers and wives in this New India.

(4) for moralizing the social life in India which otherwise would have the bias of an increasingly disproportionate educated male population.

(5) for demonstrating the uplifting influence of Christ upon that sex which has been so disastrously ignored and repressed in India, and for proving that the best is none too good for Indian womanhood. 'Better women' are the strongest factor in the development of a Better India.

(6) for definitely distributing the ideals of Christian womanhood to all parts of Southern Asia from which the College draws its students. Personal witness to the value of Christian education for women is a real Kingdom message.

(7) for training women to take their part in the new national life of awakened India. This training must be by contact with lives already devoted to Christ, more than by precept, for 'character is caught, not taught.'

(8) for meeting the needs of the more educated classes of India, as the evangelistic and other parts of mission work minister specifically to the needs of the masses."

(9) In furnishing pre-medical training for the hundreds of women who must be educated to follow in the footsteps of the Great Physician.

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