The Rays Before Satyajit: Creativity and Modernity in Colonial India by Chandak SengooptaThe Rays Before Satyajit: Creativity and Modernity in Colonial India by Chandak Sengoopta

The Rays Before Satyajit: Creativity and Modernity in Colonial India

byChandak Sengoopta

Hardcover | July 23, 2016

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Although the filmmaker Satyajit Ray is well-known across the world, few outside Bengal know much about the diverse contributions of his forebears to printing technology, nationalism, childrens literature, feminism, advertising, entreprenurial culture and religious reform. Even within Bengal,the earlier Rays are often regarded exclusively as childrens writers. The first study in English of the multifarious interests and accomplishments of the Ray family and its collateral branches, The Rays Before Satyajit interweaves the Ray saga with the larger history of Indian modernity and itscontradictions. Whilst eager to learn from the West and rarely drawn to simple-minded nationalism, the Rays, at their best, shunned mere imitation and sought to create forms of the modern that were thoroughly Indian and enthusiastically cosmopolitan. Some of the outcomes of this quest such asUpendrakishore Rays innovations in half-tone photography were even appreciated in the West, though the metropolitan careers of colonial innovators, as the book shows, were inevitably constrained by forces beyond their control. Ranging confidently across the history of religion, literature,science, technology and entrepreneurial culture, The Rays before Satyajit is not only a collective biography of an extraordinary family but illuminates the history of Indian modernity from a bracingly original perspective.

About The Author

Chandak Sengoopta is Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London, UK.

Details & Specs

Title:The Rays Before Satyajit: Creativity and Modernity in Colonial IndiaFormat:HardcoverDimensions:426 pagesPublished:July 23, 2016Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199464758

ISBN - 13:9780199464753

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgementsList of AbbreviationsIntroduction: The Rays and the History of Modernity in India1. From the Old World to the New: A Family in Transition2. New Faith, New Woman, New Society3. Empire, Nation, Women4. The Polymathic Artisan5. Home and the World: Swadeshi and Its Ambiguities6. Triumph and TragedyEpilogue: New Challenges, Old ValuesIndexAbout the Author