Talking Back: The Idea of Civilization in the Indian Nationalist Discourse

Hardcover | October 15, 2011

bySabyasachi Bhattacharya

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The British discourse on India's history, for the greater part of the nineteenth century, was by and large a monologue. This volume highlights how around the turn of the century, Indians began to 'talk back' and question the colonial assumptions in imagining and narrating India's past. Thisbook highlights how the idea of civilization formed one of the strong elements of the Indian nationalist discourse. It examines the debates surrounding the civilization discourse and nationhood. While Gandhi, Tagore or Nehru were the foremost thought-leaders in the representation of Indiancivilization in a new way, the author argues that there were many others, mainly academic intellectuals in the areas of sociology, linguistics, intellectual history, and various branches of historiography, who contributed to make 'Indian civilization' a central theme in all forms of Indian studies. This book will be of considerable interest to scholars and students of modern Indian history particularly those interested in social and intellectual history.

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The British discourse on India's history, for the greater part of the nineteenth century, was by and large a monologue. This volume highlights how around the turn of the century, Indians began to 'talk back' and question the colonial assumptions in imagining and narrating India's past. Thisbook highlights how the idea of civilization f...

Sabyasachi Bhattacharya is former Vice Chancellor of Visva-Bharati University and former professor at the Centre for Historical Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:192 pagesPublished:October 15, 2011Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198075049

ISBN - 13:9780198075042

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. The Colonialist Monologue and India Talking Back2. Mahatma Gandhi and the Nationalist Discourse of Civilization3. The Concept of Civilization: Rabindranath Tagore's Evolving Perspective4. Discovering and Inventing India: Jawaharlal Nehru5. Rethinking Indian CivilizationBibliographyIndex