Here's Nell Freudenberger writing in New York Times about David Leavitt's new novel "The Indian Clerk" about the life of Indian mathematician and genius S. Ramanujan (The Indian Clerk - David Leavitt). Excerpts:
"Once Ramanujan arrives in England, he becomes a Cambridge celebrity: there is competition among the dons for proximity to the “Hindoo calculator,” as he’s called in the press. Another mathematician, Eric Neville, takes Ramanujan into his home; his wife, Alice, becomes obsessed with their guest’s comfort, catering to his dietary restrictions, albeit in a very British fashion (a “vegetable goose” is one of the more appealing attempts). There are various justifications for the impulse to save Ramanujan: Alice claims to be easing his culture shock, while Hardy hopes to develop his mind. In both cases, however, their fascination has a sexually predatory edge: Hardy “cannot deny that it excites him, the prospect of rescuing a young genius from poverty and obscurity and watching him flourish. ... Or perhaps what excites him is the vision he has conjured up, in spite of himself, of Ramanujan: a young Gurkha, brandishing a sword.”"
"“The Indian Clerk” is loosely structured around a lecture given by the brilliant English mathematician and Cambridge don G. H. Hardy. In 1913, as Hardy is engaged in trying to prove the Riemann hypothesis — a mathematical problem involving prime numbers that Leavitt (the author of a brief biography of the mathematician Alan Turing) seems to understand deeply."
Must tear that book to shreds! To the occidental eye all Indians are either turban-ed Sardarjees or Khukri-wielding Gurkhas. Ever heard about Tamilians (S Ramanujan was one) and Malayalis (me!)?