Living Together Separately: Cultural India in History and Politics

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Item Code: IDE661
Author: Edited By. Munshirul Hasan and Asim Roy
Publisher: Oxford University Press, New Delhi
Language: English
Edition: 2005
ISBN: 0195669215
Pages: 436
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details 9.8" X 6.6"
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Book Description
From the Jacket:

The syncretistic ethos of traditions in South Asia has now become part of public discourse. Political scientists, historians, and social activists have laid stress on syncretism as an important political value in present times. Mindful of these projections, the essays in this volume approach the issues of syncretism, synthesis, and pluralism in South Asia today to objectively reassess their importance in coping with a political and cultural future.

The lucid introduction by Asim Roy and Mushirul Hasan outlines the relevance of the debate both within and outside the academe. It prepares the way for the relevant questions the essays pose even as they focus on various individuals, moments, and encounters in Indian history. How does one define syncretism? What is the difference between syncretism and pluralism? Is it possible to live together separately? The volume takes a fresh look at various historical events, personalities, and phenomena, and makes an effort to revisit many long-held, black-and-white, uni-dimensional views such as 'unity in diversity' and 'composite culture'.

In the context of a long history of political turmoil - some of it perceived to be rooted in relations between religious communities - this collection envisions the future direction of India's cultural development and the space and relevance of a syncretistic cultural ethos within it. The contributors reflect on traditions which have been relegated to the background in popular political discourse, but have drawn on diverse traditions and negotiated life on the margins. With its eclectic selection of themes, this collection is able to examine the resilience, strengths, and weaknesses of syncretic culture with special reference to democracy and federalism.

Due to its engagement with a highly topical theme, this book will be of interest to students and scholars of medieval and modern Indian history, sociologists, political scientists as well as lay readers interested in the question of Indian pluralism as reflected in its history.

About the Editors:

Munshirual Mahas is Professor of Modern Indian History, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.

Asim Roy is Professor, School of History and Classics, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.


Joya Chatterjee
Nupur Chaudhary
Michael H. Fisher
Najaf Haider
Munshirual Hasan
David Lelyveld
Gurpreet Mahajan
Shail Mayaram
Barbara Metcalf
Annie Montaut
Rajat Kanta Ray
Francis Robinson
Asim Roy
Kumkum Sangari
Kerrin Grafin Schwerin
Farzana Shaikh
Madhu Trivedi
Peter Van Der Veer


Asim Roy
1. Thinking over 'Popular Islam' in South Asia: Search for a Paradigm
 Asim Roy
2. References to Tradition in South Asia
 Peter van der Veer
3. Colonial Language Classification, Post-colonial Language
Movements, and the Grassroot Multilingualism Ethos in India
 Annie Montaut
4. Reinventing Democratic Citizenship in a Plural Society
 Gurpreet Mahajan
5. A 'Holi Riot' of 1714: Versions from Ahmedabad and Delhi
 Najaf Haider
6. Living Together: Ajmer as a Paradigm for the (South) Asian City
 Shail Mayaram
7. The Cow-saving Muslim Saint: Elite and Folk Representations of a Tomb Cult in Oudh
 Kerrin Grafin Schwerin
8. A Genre of Composite Creativity: Marsiya and Its Performance in Awadh
 Madhu Trivedi
9. Of Graveyards and Ghettos: Muslims in Partitioned West Bengal 1947-67
 Joya Chatterji
10. From Beehive Cells to Civil Space: A History of Indian Matrimony
 Nupur Chaudhary and Rajat Kanta Ray
11. Joint Narratives, Separate Nations: Qurratulain Hyder's Aag Ka Darya
 Kumkum Sangari
12. From Princely Court to House of Commons: D.O. Dyce
Sombre (1808-51) from Sardhana to London
 Michael H. Fisher
13. Sharif Culture and Colonial Rule: A Maulvi - Missionary Encounter
 Mushirul Hasan
14. Living Together Separately: The 'Ulma of Farangi Mahall c.1700-c. 1950
 Francis Robinson
15. Millat and Mazhab: Rethinking Iqbal's Political Vision
 Farzana Shaikh
16. Reinventing Islamic Politics in Interwar India: The Clergy
Commitment to 'Composite Nationalism'
 Barbara Metcalf
17. The Colonial Context of Muslim Seperatism:
From Sayyid Ahmad Barelvi to Sayyid Ahmad Khan
 David Lelyveld
Bibliographical Essay
 Adnan Farooqui and Vasundhara Sirnate

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