ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Colonial IndiaSubscribe to Colonial India

The Archaeology of ‘Age’ in Colonial India

Sex, Law, and the Politics of Age: Child Marriage in India, 1891–1937 by Ishita Pande, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020; pp xvi + 322, price not indicated.

The Census and the Minoritisation of Muslims

Alpasankhyataru Mattu Jaati Vyavasthe: Asmite, Vasahatushahi mattu Misalati (In Kannada; Minorities and Caste System: Identity, Coloniality and Reservations) by Muzaffar Assadi, Bengaluru: Bahurupi, 2021; pp 264, `300 (hardcover).

The Earning Bhadramahila and the ‘Endangered Race’

This paper attempts to document the changing attitude of sections of bhadralok in colonial Bengal towards middle-class women’s paid work. From the 1920s onwards, a number of journal editors and contributors, overcoming their earlier inhibitions, began to propagate middle-class women’s/widows’ economic independence. However, the nature and limits of the proposed economic independence of the new icon, the earning bhadramahila, were clearly defined by the new discourse on women and work. The same journals publicised a range of other issues including anxieties about the “declining number” as well as the “declining fortune” of Bengali Hindus.

Striving for Begumpura: Traversing the Intellectual Activism of Gail Omvedt

​Writer, researcher, life-long fellow traveller of the progressive movements and long-time author with the Economic & Political Weekly, Gail Omvedt passed away on 25 August 2021. In this reading list, we present some of the highlights of her scholarship published in EPW.

Concept of Development and Hegemonic World Order

Erasing the Binary Distinction of Developed and Underdeveloped: A Comparative Study of the Emergence of the Large-scale Steel Industry in Imperial Russia, Imperial Britain, Imperial America, and Colonial India, 1880–1914 by Vinay Bahl, US: Shunya, 2019; pp 417, price not indicated.

 

Territory as Political Technology

Delimitation in Jammu and Kashmir marks an important moment to reflect on how imagined territories determine everyday life as well as shape political realities.

Colonial Episteme, Political Forgetting, and the Quest for Decolonising History

The Loss of Hindustan: The Invention of India by Manan Ahmed Asif, London: Harvard University Press, 2020; pp 321, 599.

 

Constructing Hijras as Colonial Subjects

Governing Gender and Sexuality in Colonial India: The Hijra, c 1850–1900 by Jessica Hinchy, Cambridge, New York, Port Melbourne, New Delhi and Singapore: Cambridge University Press, 2019; pp xviii + 305, price not indicated.  

Family, State, and Ideal Populations

Reproductive Politics and the Making of Modern India by Mytheli Sreenivas, Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2021; pp 274, `2,250.

Polity, Policy, and the Economy of Salt in Manipur circa 1826–1947

While the traditional production of spherical flat salt chunks through the evaporation of saline water from salt wells dates back to the ancient history of Manipur, notions of salt monopolies and salt as a revenue source evolved during the colonial period in Manipur. The British became involved in local politics and took control of the fiscal policy of the state. Under them, the quantum of salt produced reduced, and salt production itself became more expensive. This paper studies how British business practices, and, later on, an uninterested state government, caused the self-reliant salt economy to become a dependent one.

 

Past Continuous

In the early 20th century, when K M Munshi was making a name for himself in the literary and cultural sphere of Gujarat, he was both intervening in and departing from the past. Curating elements of the past that suited his equally curated modernity, Munshi exemplifies many connections that become evident of Gujarat in the subsequent years. In this paper, we ask: “What was Munshi’s past?” In other words, whom was he responding to from the 19th century? The period of our inquiry in Munshi’s life is the one that witnessed the famous Patan trilogy. The questions are situated in both cultural history and literature.

 

Chugging into Unfamiliar Stations

Tracks of Change: Railways and Everyday Life in Colonial India by Ritika Prasad; New Delhi: Cambridge University Press, 2015; pp ix+315, Rs 795, hardback.

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