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Texts of Power

Emerging Disciplines in Colonial Bengal

1995

Partha Chatterjee, editor

Texts of Power

The case of Bengal illustrates the interaction of colonialism and modernity.

The contributors consider what the case of Bengal says about the workings of Western modernity in a colonial setting.

Contributors: Pradip Kumar Bose, Keya Dasgupta, Tapati Guha-Thakurta, Tapti Roy, Ranabir Samaddar.

Framed by a vision outlined in a superb introduction by the editor, Partha Chatterjee. Ambitious and unusually sophisticated and coherent set of essays on the emergence of modern disciplines in a colonial context.

Journal of Asian Studies

Bengal was the first “modern” province in India-the first, that is, to undergo a forced encounter with Western modernity. Beginning with this premise, the writers in Texts of Power consider what the case of Bengal says about the workings of Western modernity in a colonial setting.

A truly interdisciplinary effort, this collection probes questions of pedagogy, nationalism, and gender. Among the subjects explored are colonialist and nationalist surveillance of Bengali literature; the disposition of the nation’s art; the politics of child-rearing; the mapping of Calcutta; and the disciplining of historical memory. By applying the theoretical insights of recent historical and cultural studies to the specific circumstances of Bengal, the authors develop a new approach to Indian intellectual and cultural history. Their work makes a significant contribution to our understanding of contemporary intellectual modernity.

Contributors: Pradip Kumar Bose, Keya Dasgupta, Tapati Guha-Thakurta, all at the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta; Tapti Roy, Maharani Kashiswari College, Calcutta; Ranabir Samaddar, Maulana Azad Institute of Asian Studies.

Texts of Power

Partha Chatterjee is professor of political science at the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences in Calcutta, India.

Texts of Power

Framed by a vision outlined in a superb introduction by the editor, Partha Chatterjee. Ambitious and unusually sophisticated and coherent set of essays on the emergence of modern disciplines in a colonial context.

Journal of Asian Studies