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Seamless Boundaries: Lutfullah's Narrative beyond East and West

Seamless Boundaries: Lutfullah's Narrative beyond East and West
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Item Code: IDI592
Author: Mushirul Hasan
Publisher: Oxford University Press, New Delhi
Edition: 2007
ISBN: 0195676777
Pages: 282
Cover: Hardcover
Other Details: 8.6"X 5.6
From the Jacket

Seamless Boundaries presents the autobiography of the nineteenth-century traveller Lutfullah Khan. First published in 1857, the Autobiography of Lutfullah is one of the earliest known works of its kind by an Indian in English.

Belonging to a Sufi lineage of the Malwa region, Lutfulah fled from his ancestral home to Agra. During the subsequent years he travelled extensively and taught Arabic, Persian, Gujarati, and Marathi to English newcomers in the East India Company. The last of these journeys was his notable voyage to and description of England in 1844. This in many ways was the culmination of Lutfullah's interest in the language and culture of the British. Traversing geographical and cultural boundaries, Lutfullah's narrative defies conventional labels. With an orientation not 'secular' in the European sense, and yet able to respect composite practices, he envisioned a lived Islam in harmony with other religious and philosophical traditions.

The autobiography uncovers important socio-cultural dimensions such as the absence of contemporary oft-perceived Hindu-Muslim tensions in central India. His taste for British cultural, Literary, and artistic life was not uncritical. There was, if anything, a hidden tension between his admiration for British Enlightenment values and his attachment to Indian and Islamic traditions.

Lutfulla's account provides an understanding of events, people, and their culture beyond mere ast-west dichotomies. He, like his near-contemporary traveller to the West, Abu Taleb, unwittingly initiated the significant process of an Anglo-Muslim rapproachment.

With a substantial introduction and annotations by Mushirul Hasan. This volume will interest students and scholars of medieval Indian history, Islamic studies, religious studies, comparative religion, sociology, anthropology, as well as the interested lay reader.

Mushirul Hasan is Vice Chancellor and Professor of Modern Indian History, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.

Introduction by Mushirul Hasanix
Lutfullah's Acknowledgementsxxiii
Preface to the Original Editionxxiv
My birth and parentage-Death of my father-My mother finds an asylum with my uncle-Famine and the persecution ;of my cousins-My mischievous habits-I catch a Mulla napping and dose my schoolmaster-The tank of Dharanagar, where my cousins attempts to drown me-Rajaram, the Good Samaritan- A new cure for dysentery-End of my childhood.
Political state of affairs about the year 1810-Rumours respecting the new race of foreigners called the Feringees-Bheel robbers-Mode of executing them-Visit to Baroda-First rencontre with Feringees-Rite of circumcision-Reflections-Visit to Ujjain-My mother's second marriage-Plunder of my stepfather's house by Sindhiah's soldiers-An Eastern story
My stepfather imputes his calamity to shaving on an unlucky day-Astrology and superstitions of the inhabitants of Hindustan-We visit Sindhiah's Court at Gwalior-The prince pays our losses with a smile, enlists my stepfather in his service-My cruel treatment-I fly from Gwalior-Adventure with the Thug Juma-Agra-Akbar.48
My service with Hindu Rao's physician-I visit Delhi-Return to Gwalior-The cobra's bite cured-Once more at Ujjain-Filial love stronger than the astrologer's threats-Sir T. Hislop's army-Battle of Mehidpur-I weary of Ujjain-My luckless rencontre with Musa the Afghan-Strange wanderings in the jungle-The secret unveiled-Nadir, the chief of the Bheels-Am promoted to be thieves' secretary-A Bheel banquet and strange horrors-My flight-the old Shaikh once more-My mother's death-Appointment to Dharapur-The night march-The tiger's spring-Sir John Malcolm
I become Munshi to the Bheel agent-I am transferred to Lieut. Hart-The expedition to Nagar parkar- A Maratha horseman's impudence-Decision of the Native Magistrate-Egyptian version of the story of Shylock
The Ram desert-Colonel Miles-Gharles the Twelfth's music somewhat too close-Thoughts of Makka-Captain Bagnold-Mandavi-Philosophic meditations and dogmatism disturbed-Study English at Kaira-Infanticide-The pirates of Dwarka-the Fort taken-Wanderings in the hills of Kattwar-The Aghori-Gogo-Surat-The Parsi cemetery
Bombay-I disrobe a porter-The mosque of Zacharias-Delights of a passage boat-Panwell-Puna-Parbati-Satara-Aurangzeb's siege, and witticism of Niamat Khan-I marry and repent-Monogamists versus Polygamists-A Suttee-The Hindu religion originally pure-I return to Surat-Arabic studies-The high priest of the Bohras-Paradise tickets-Ensign W. J. Eastwick-His fever-Dr. R. Azrail's assistant-Tankaria Bandar-Ensign Eastwick appointed to Lord Clare's bodyguard-Baroda-Abu
Udepur-Pali-Pokharji-Ajmir-I return to Surat-I enter the service of the Nuwab-The intrigues of a petty Court-My conge.
I am appointed to an office under the political Agent in Kattiawar-The Nagar Brahmans-I resign office in order to accompany Captain Eastwick, assistant to Colonel Pottinger, Resident in Sindh-Mr. Erskine presents me with a certificate and a Kashmir shawl-I find three unexpected companions-Sara, the fair Maimuni-I leave Rajkot-The Jam of Nowanagar-Dharol-The merry Governor of Juria Bandar-Pleasant sailing-Frisky monsters of the deep-Speculations of the Sindhis as to our purpose in coming to their country-I act as priest at the Idu'I Fitr-March to Tatta-Description of Tatta
False alarms-Shir Mohamed-Three officers burnt to death-The Amirs accept the treaty-The army marches for Shikarpur-Nadir Shah and the Saiyids of Lakki-Sehwan-Larkhana-Great cheapness of food-Shikarpur-Biluchi robbers-Fath Mohamed Ghori-Sakhar-Khairpur-Mir Rustam-Marauders-The naik and the political agent-Thank you for nothing-Great heat-The scorpion remedy-More plundering.
Zark Domki-The storming of Khangarh-The new governor of Shikarpur-Mr Ross Bell-Abd'urrahman and his civilized bride-Seclusion of women, desirable or not-Voyage to Hydrabad-I obtain leave for three months to revisit Surat-Voyage and journey Jafirabad.
The slave governor of Jafirabad-Return to Surat-Death, of the Nuwab's eldest daughter-I take service with Mr. Pelly-He transfers me to Mr Langford-The Nuwab of Cambay and has salt pans-Once more a Munshi-The Nuwab of Surat dies of cholera-Sequestration of his property-Mir Jafir Ali, his son-in-low, prepares to proceed to England-Engages me and Mr Scott as his secretaries.
The voyage to Ceylon-Christian quarters and the unclean animal-Cingalese gentlemen-Aden-Ass-equipages-The Kaba on the move-Eve's burial-place-Selfishness of John Bull-Grand Cairo-Mohamed Ali-Mrs Larking-Arabic, the language of the huris-Alexandria-Did Umar burn the great library ?-Gibraltar-Arrival at the Mother-bank.
Land at Southampton-London-Kind friends-Mr. Latham-Mr Pulsford-The sights of London-The Opera-Mr Baring-Lord Ripon-Return to India
Pedigree of Lutfullah227

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