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Landscape, Culture, and Belonging

Landscape, Culture, and Belonging
Writing the History of Northeast India

Neeladri Bhattacharya, Joy L. K. Pachuau, David Ludden, Bodhisattva Kar, Duncan McDuie-Ra, David Vumlallian Zou, Arupjyoti Saikia, Alban von Stockhausen, Arkotong Longkumer, Yengkhom Jilangamba, Anandaroop Sen, Lipokmar Dzüvichu, Lanusangla Tzüdir, John Thomas
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  • Date Published: May 2019
  • availability: Temporarily unavailable - available from October 2019
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108481298

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About the Authors
  • This collection of essays is an important contribution to the new literature on frontier studies and the historiography of Northeast India. Moving away from an exclusive dependence on colonial ethnographies, the authors build their arguments on a varied range of sources: from buranjis to revenue records, survey maps to explorers' diaries, and missionary papers to police files. They question the givennes of the categories through which the region is usually described, and contest the stereotypes by which the people of the region are primitivized. They explore the historical processes whereby the region was surveyed, mapped, understood, represented, politically governed, economically refigured, and historically constituted during the colonial period. Though focused on the experience of Northeast India, the volume also raises substantive questions about the idea of the frontier and the border, the primitive and the modern, and the tribal and the settled, the local and the trans-local.

    • Explores how practices of exploring, mapping, surveying, categorising, and representing constitute the identity of a region
    • Shows the intimate link between the politics of religion and the politics of identity formation
    • Opens up new sources of research, and new ways of thinking, on Northeast India and frontier histories
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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108481298
    • dimensions: 235 x 158 x 22 mm
    • weight: 0.55kg
    • availability: Temporarily unavailable - available from October 2019
  • Table of Contents

    List of figures
    Introduction Neeladri Bhattacharya and Joy L. K. Pachuau
    Part I. Borders and Beyond:
    1. India's spatial history in the Brahmaputra–Meghna river basin David Ludden
    2. The Birth of the Ryot: Rethinking the Agrarian in British Assam Bodhisattva Kar
    3. Embracing or challenging the 'tribe'? Dilemmas in reproducing obligatory pasts in Meghalaya Duncan McDuie-Ra
    Part II. Surveys and Explorations:
    4. Picturing a region: a geographical history of British Assam David Vumlallian Zou
    5. Geographical exploration and historical investigation: John Peter Wade in Assam Arupjyoti Saikia
    Part III. Ethnography, History and the Politics of Representation:
    6. Naga: lineages of a term Alban von Stockhausen
    7. Representing the Nagas: negotiating national culture and consumption Arkotong Longkumer
    Part IV. Law, State and Practices of Governance:
    8. Frontier regime and colonial rule Yengkhom Jilangamba
    9. The law of emptiness: episodes from Lushai and Chin Hills (1890–98) Anandaroop Sen
    10. The colonial state and the 'illegal' arms trade along the North-East frontier of India, 1860s to 1900s Lipokmar Dzüvichu
    Part V. Cultural Dialogues:
    11. Appropriating the Ao past in the Christian present Lanusangla Tzüdir
    12. Why do people convert? Understanding conversions to Christianity in Mizoram Joy L. K. Pachuau
    13. From sacred rocks to temples: recasting religion as identity in North-East India John Thomas
    Notes on contributors
    Index.

  • Editors

    Neeladri Bhattacharya, Jawaharlal Nehru University
    Neeladri Bhattacharya is Professor of Modern Indian History at the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He was Agatha Harrison Fellow of St Anthony's College, University of Oxford and Visiting Professor at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesberg, in 2001.

    Joy L. K. Pachuau, Jawaharlal Nehru University
    Joy L. K. Pachuau is Professor of History at the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. She was Charles Wallace Visiting Fellow at the Centre for South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge, in 2001. Her research interests include European expansion in Asia in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, history of Christianity in India and Asia, sociocultural history of Northeast India, and visual anthropology.

    Contributors

    Neeladri Bhattacharya, Joy L. K. Pachuau, David Ludden, Bodhisattva Kar, Duncan McDuie-Ra, David Vumlallian Zou, Arupjyoti Saikia, Alban von Stockhausen, Arkotong Longkumer, Yengkhom Jilangamba, Anandaroop Sen, Lipokmar Dzüvichu, Lanusangla Tzüdir, John Thomas

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