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Representing Literature Politics and Identities India
Representing Literature Politics and Identities India
Description
Form The Jacket

This book provides a critical commentary politics, language literature identity media religion caste and the India diaspora over the last two centuries.

While analysing and synthesizing work done in diverse intellectual traditions. It discusses the significance of Sanskrit and its relationship with the regional languages on India; the relationship between Hindi and Urdu; and the role of English as language of colonial administration and education after independence.

The study also deals with the new generation of past-independence Indian English writers who express a whole range of emotions, which were articulated through the vernacular in the colonial period. It explores the representation of Indian Hindi and Muslim through Hindi films and also looks into the role of Hindi television programmes in the construction of national and regional identities.

The authors examine the problem of creating a national identity the rise of Hindi politics in the 1990s; and Hindu -Muslim relations in the context of religious reform and political loyalty to the nation-state. They also analyse the relationship of the Indian diaspora with the motherland and the host country.

Going beyond conventional boundaries of nation-states academic disciplines and conceptual categories the interdisciplinary work will aid those embarking on a new discovery of India. It will be useful to scholars and students of politics history literature and cultural studies.

Mukesh Williams is faculty at keio University Shonan Fujisawa Campus (SFC) Kanagawa and at the world Language Center Soka University Tokyo Japan

Rohit Wanchoo is head of the Department of history, St Stephen's Collage University of Delhi.

Introduction

This book analyses and synthesizes work done in diverse intellectual traditions with the objective of providing a framework for further interdisciplinary studies on India. Many Indian intellectuals have responded selectively and with varying degrees of intensity to the Western intellectual tradition. Both postmodernism and dependency theory-two of the big intellectual influences from the West that have influenced scholars in Africa and Latin America-have enjoyed rather limited success in Indian universities and the media. It is possible to offer arguments for this intellectual preference, but the intellectual currents of the west have not been able to overpower India. Indian universities may seem stagnant by Western standards but they have developed a healthy skepticism about the intellectual fashions sweeping the West. A fear of western intellectual hegemony cutting across ideological barriers between the left and the right has been the major factor in the selective response to western intellectual traditions. The Indian intellectual tradition on the periphery has its own peculiarity that has to do with both slow response to Western tradition and skepticism about the relevance of foreign traditions and their ulterior motives.

In the last two decades the intellectual context of the Indian universities has changed. The performance of the many Indian Institutes of technology (IITs) and their alumni have grabbed international headlines and influenced the way Indian education is perceived abroad. Critics of Postcolonialism have often remarked somewhat cynically that one of the sings of postcolonialism is when Third World intellectuals secure tenured professorship in western academies. Once western universities started accepting intellectuals form the periphery, interaction between the Anglo American world and India increased substantially-the native informant become the postcolonial intellectual. The revolution in communications neo liberal globalization and recent migration from India have further broken down the moral and political certainties of the post-independence generation that had dominated of the politics and society in India.

The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and the retreat of the socialist ideal deeply affected Indian academics and their liberal Marxist ideas of universalism. While liberals and Marxists different in their analysis of society and programmatic conceptions of the future they were completely unmoved by ideas of relativism and individualistic critiques of state power. For a long time Indian scholars did not respond with enthusiasm conceptions of the Hayek Nozick and Milton Friedman though they were more amenable to the ideas generated by Marx Keynes or Gandhi. But in the last 15 years the global geopolitical and intellectual changes have had a deep impact on academic scholarship in India. It is possible to see a genuine search for new ways to study social changes and diverse intellectual traditions. The search finds expression in receptivity to multi-disciplinary methods. We would like to expand the new intellectual space opened recently and in doing so contribute is some measure to its develoment. This ought to be the intellectual justification for this book.

The shadow of colonialism bears heavily on the intellectual tradition in Indian. We can experience the impact of colonialism in several areas the growth of academic discipliners like law history and literature one hand and the enormous paper work and procedural culture in government bureaucracy and trade on the other. In a large measure orientalist ideas or other forms if colonial knowledge have influenced these areas. The early nationalist responded to colonial domination in primarily economic and cultural terms. The economic ideology if nationalism and the critiques of colonialism gained widespread acceptance amongst different shades of nationalists ranging from the left to the right and from Savarkar to Gandhi. The cultural critique was based on the benign perception of Indian society and religion deriving its power from the work of scholars like William Jones, Henry Thomas Colebrooke Maurice Winternitz Max Muller sir Henry Maine and others. The ideas about the significance of Sanskrit the vitality of village republics and the spiritual heritage of India owed a lot to the work of these orientalists. Over the last 20 years the works of scholars like Edward said and Bernard Cohn have made us more sensitive to the power relations affecting the production of knowledge. Cohn has highlighted the role of the census and it is impact on India self-perception. Scholars like Sudipta Kaviraj and Arjun Appadurai have brought out the transition form Fuzzy identities to ones that are more rigid. Along the way they have introduced the notion of majority and minority in understanding the dynamics of the south Asian body politic.

Contents

Acknowledgements vii
A Further Note ix
Introduction 1
1The Sanskrit Heritage: Bengali and Hindu Literatures 35
2English and Indian English Literature 84
3Representing the nation in the Hindu Media 125
4Hindu Politics and the Nation 160
5Religious Identities and Politics 198
6South Asian Diaspora: Negotiating Des Pardes 234
Conclusion 267
Bibliography 287
Index320

Representing Literature Politics and Identities India

Item Code:
IDK567
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2008
Publisher:
ISBN:
9780195692266
Size:
8.7" X 5.6"
Pages:
353
Price:
$41.50   Shipping Free
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Form The Jacket

This book provides a critical commentary politics, language literature identity media religion caste and the India diaspora over the last two centuries.

While analysing and synthesizing work done in diverse intellectual traditions. It discusses the significance of Sanskrit and its relationship with the regional languages on India; the relationship between Hindi and Urdu; and the role of English as language of colonial administration and education after independence.

The study also deals with the new generation of past-independence Indian English writers who express a whole range of emotions, which were articulated through the vernacular in the colonial period. It explores the representation of Indian Hindi and Muslim through Hindi films and also looks into the role of Hindi television programmes in the construction of national and regional identities.

The authors examine the problem of creating a national identity the rise of Hindi politics in the 1990s; and Hindu -Muslim relations in the context of religious reform and political loyalty to the nation-state. They also analyse the relationship of the Indian diaspora with the motherland and the host country.

Going beyond conventional boundaries of nation-states academic disciplines and conceptual categories the interdisciplinary work will aid those embarking on a new discovery of India. It will be useful to scholars and students of politics history literature and cultural studies.

Mukesh Williams is faculty at keio University Shonan Fujisawa Campus (SFC) Kanagawa and at the world Language Center Soka University Tokyo Japan

Rohit Wanchoo is head of the Department of history, St Stephen's Collage University of Delhi.

Introduction

This book analyses and synthesizes work done in diverse intellectual traditions with the objective of providing a framework for further interdisciplinary studies on India. Many Indian intellectuals have responded selectively and with varying degrees of intensity to the Western intellectual tradition. Both postmodernism and dependency theory-two of the big intellectual influences from the West that have influenced scholars in Africa and Latin America-have enjoyed rather limited success in Indian universities and the media. It is possible to offer arguments for this intellectual preference, but the intellectual currents of the west have not been able to overpower India. Indian universities may seem stagnant by Western standards but they have developed a healthy skepticism about the intellectual fashions sweeping the West. A fear of western intellectual hegemony cutting across ideological barriers between the left and the right has been the major factor in the selective response to western intellectual traditions. The Indian intellectual tradition on the periphery has its own peculiarity that has to do with both slow response to Western tradition and skepticism about the relevance of foreign traditions and their ulterior motives.

In the last two decades the intellectual context of the Indian universities has changed. The performance of the many Indian Institutes of technology (IITs) and their alumni have grabbed international headlines and influenced the way Indian education is perceived abroad. Critics of Postcolonialism have often remarked somewhat cynically that one of the sings of postcolonialism is when Third World intellectuals secure tenured professorship in western academies. Once western universities started accepting intellectuals form the periphery, interaction between the Anglo American world and India increased substantially-the native informant become the postcolonial intellectual. The revolution in communications neo liberal globalization and recent migration from India have further broken down the moral and political certainties of the post-independence generation that had dominated of the politics and society in India.

The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 and the retreat of the socialist ideal deeply affected Indian academics and their liberal Marxist ideas of universalism. While liberals and Marxists different in their analysis of society and programmatic conceptions of the future they were completely unmoved by ideas of relativism and individualistic critiques of state power. For a long time Indian scholars did not respond with enthusiasm conceptions of the Hayek Nozick and Milton Friedman though they were more amenable to the ideas generated by Marx Keynes or Gandhi. But in the last 15 years the global geopolitical and intellectual changes have had a deep impact on academic scholarship in India. It is possible to see a genuine search for new ways to study social changes and diverse intellectual traditions. The search finds expression in receptivity to multi-disciplinary methods. We would like to expand the new intellectual space opened recently and in doing so contribute is some measure to its develoment. This ought to be the intellectual justification for this book.

The shadow of colonialism bears heavily on the intellectual tradition in Indian. We can experience the impact of colonialism in several areas the growth of academic discipliners like law history and literature one hand and the enormous paper work and procedural culture in government bureaucracy and trade on the other. In a large measure orientalist ideas or other forms if colonial knowledge have influenced these areas. The early nationalist responded to colonial domination in primarily economic and cultural terms. The economic ideology if nationalism and the critiques of colonialism gained widespread acceptance amongst different shades of nationalists ranging from the left to the right and from Savarkar to Gandhi. The cultural critique was based on the benign perception of Indian society and religion deriving its power from the work of scholars like William Jones, Henry Thomas Colebrooke Maurice Winternitz Max Muller sir Henry Maine and others. The ideas about the significance of Sanskrit the vitality of village republics and the spiritual heritage of India owed a lot to the work of these orientalists. Over the last 20 years the works of scholars like Edward said and Bernard Cohn have made us more sensitive to the power relations affecting the production of knowledge. Cohn has highlighted the role of the census and it is impact on India self-perception. Scholars like Sudipta Kaviraj and Arjun Appadurai have brought out the transition form Fuzzy identities to ones that are more rigid. Along the way they have introduced the notion of majority and minority in understanding the dynamics of the south Asian body politic.

Contents

Acknowledgements vii
A Further Note ix
Introduction 1
1The Sanskrit Heritage: Bengali and Hindu Literatures 35
2English and Indian English Literature 84
3Representing the nation in the Hindu Media 125
4Hindu Politics and the Nation 160
5Religious Identities and Politics 198
6South Asian Diaspora: Negotiating Des Pardes 234
Conclusion 267
Bibliography 287
Index320
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