Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series

Orientalism, Empire, and National Culture

India, 1770-1880

Authors: Dodson, M.

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About this book

Orientalist research has most often been characterised as an integral element of the European will-to-power over the Asian world. This study seeks to nuance this view, and asserts that British Orientalism in India was also an inherently complex and unstable enterprise, predicated upon the cultural authority of the Sanskrit pandits.

About the authors

MICHAEL S. DODSON is Assistant Professor of South Asian and British Imperial History at Indiana University, Bloomington, USA.


Reviews

Longlisted for the ICAS Book Prize (IBP) 2009 for the Humanities and Social Sciences

'This is a book about orientalism in India,' Dodson tells us. But it is also much more. In exploring the evolution of Sanskrit intellectual culture at Benares College, Dodson reveals a complex, layered world of knowledge production in an increasingly important outpost of the British Empire. The 'common ground' of Benares College possessed, to be sure, an uneven political topography, but it was a topography full of surprising landmarks - especially for those who assume an easy congruence between trajectories of power and knowledge in Europe's engagement with its Others. Dodson's nuanced historical mapping of this topography is as eloquent as it is penetrating. It raises profound questions not only about the nature of the British 'colonizing project' in India, but the degree to which it was a 'colonizing' project in the final analysis. Dodson's careful, stimulating scholarship deserves a wide readership.' - Professor William Pinch, Wesleyan University

'Michael Dodson aims to complicate some persistent historical truths about the ideological work of orientalism by undertaking a local study of one of its institutionalized forms, Benares Sanskrit College. Through painstaking textual analysis and equally meticulous attention to the relationship between indigenous cultural authority and the exigencies of colonial rule, he argues that Hindu pundits were not merely annexed to constructive orientalism, but that they also used it to remake their own claims to relevancy in the ever-imperializing world of the Raj. In so doing he opens up new avenues of inquiry about the fate of intellectual expertise and adaptability in the context of modern imperialism.' - Professor Antoinette Burton, the University of Illinois

'It will be of great interest to historians of modern South Asia, but also more broadly to those engaged with the roles of informants in the production of colonial knowldge, and with the history of modern educational policies and institutions in the colonial context.' - The Journal of Asian Studies


Table of contents (8 chapters)

Table of contents (8 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $99.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-0-230-28870-6
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $128.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-4039-8645-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • This title is currently reprinting. You can pre-order your copy now.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Orientalism, Empire, and National Culture
Book Subtitle
India, 1770-1880
Authors
Series Title
Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series
Copyright
2007
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited
eBook ISBN
978-0-230-28870-6
DOI
10.1057/9780230288706
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-4039-8645-0
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIV, 268
Topics