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

British IndiaSubscribe to British India

A Saga of Conceptual Difficulties

Similarity: A Paradigm for Culture Theory edited by Anil Bhatti and Dorothee Kimmich, New Delhi: Tulika Books, 2018; pp xiv + 357, ₹ 995.

Insanity and Colonial Knowledge

Britain saw a significant establishment of asylums and perceptions about insanity at the end of the 18th century. Michel Foucault traced the historiography of institutional confinement and postulated that the history of madness shows the “great confinement.” Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason (1973) begins by describing the exclusion and confinement of lepers in the large leper houses scattered at the periphery of European cities. The new cultural content after the renaissance changed radically, from reason and madness in the classical era, to sanity and insanity. Foucault was not telling the story of scientific progress. He instead moved towards social increment, isolation, and confinement in the madhouses during the age of reason.

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.

Education, Assimilation and Cultural Marginalisation of Tribes in India

The cultural marginalisation of the tribal people in India through the school system in pre- and post-independence India is discussed by drawing parallels with the residential school system that existed in the United States and Canada.

Through the Naga Insurgency

In the Shadows of Naga Insurgency: Tribes, State, and Violence in Northeast India by Jelle J P Wouters, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2018, pp xxiv + 331, ₹ 995.

World Population Day 2020: Examining Census Construction and Communal Strife in Colonial India

The British Raj, by attempting to reduce the diversity of the Indian populace into numbers that could fit a particular category, ignored the ideals of social justice and instead furthered communal mobilisation through their policy of “divide and rule.”

Indian Civil Service Examinations and Dalit Intervention in British India

During the independence movement in the mid-19th century, the Paraiyar Mahajana Sabha from Tamil Nadu prevailed upon the British government to reject the demand from the Indian elite to simultaneously hold exams for the Indian Civil Services in India in addition to London. Dalit organisations at that time felt that such a move would only enable the upper-caste Indians to monopolise the bureaucracy in India.

The Muscular Monk

Swami Vivekananda's thoughts are a complex and multidimensional interplay of India's ancient and medieval past and his 19th century milieu. He was an ardent advocate of masculinity and sports. This article discusses the infl uential contributions to theories of masculinity which provide a framework within which Vivekananda's physical activities and gendered notions can be situated. His belief that football is not insignificant reveals his concerns for the development of manliness among the so-called effeminate Bengalis. He himself practised a number of colonial sports and expressed profound interest in golf though these sports were not seen as a form of leisure. The lessons of physical culture not only strengthened his body but empowered his mind against inequality and perils. Vivekananda appeals to the Hindu sources for his construction of the body and mind of the spiritual aspirant as a site delimited and shielded.
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