Download Another Reason: Science and the Imagination of Modern India by Gyan Prakash PDF

By Gyan Prakash

Another Reason is a daring and cutting edge learn of the intimate dating among technological know-how, colonialism, and the fashionable state. Gyan Prakash, the most influential historians of India writing this day, explores in clean and unforeseen methods the complexities, contradictions, and profound value of this courting within the historical past of the subcontinent. He finds how technology served concurrently as an software of empire and as a logo of liberty, growth, and common reason--and how, in taking part in those dramatically assorted roles, it was once the most important to the emergence of the trendy nation.

Prakash levels over 2 hundred years of Indian background, from the early days of British rule to the sunrise of the postcolonial period. He starts off via taking us into colonial museums and exhibitions, the place Indian arts, crafts, crops, animals, or even humans have been classified, categorized, and displayed within the identify of technology. He exhibits how technology gave the British the capability to construct railways, canals, and bridges, to remodel agriculture and the remedy of illness, to reconstruct India's economic climate, and to transfigure India's highbrow life--all to create a sturdy, rationalized, and ecocnomic colony lower than British domination.

But Prakash issues out that technology additionally represented freedom of idea and that for the British to exploit it to perform despotism used to be a deeply contradictory company. Seizing in this contradiction, the various colonized elite started to search parallels and precedents for medical concept in India's personal highbrow heritage, making a hybrid kind of wisdom that mixed western principles with neighborhood cultural and spiritual knowing. Their paintings disrupted authorised notions of colonizer as opposed to colonized, civilized as opposed to savage, glossy as opposed to conventional, and created a kind of modernity that was once right now western and indigenous.

Throughout, Prakash attracts on significant and minor figures on each side of the colonial divide, together with Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, the nationalist historian and novelist Romesh Chunder Dutt, Prafulla Chandra Ray (author of A heritage of Hindu Chemistry), Rudyard Kipling, Lord Dalhousie, and John Stuart Mill. With its deft blend of wealthy ancient element and full of life new arguments and interpretations, Another Reason will recast how we comprehend the contradictory and colonial family tree of the trendy nation.

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1975–81: India and Pakistan Figure 1 Plan of the Farakka Barrage Source: Based on Crow et al. (1995), p. 52. 37 38 Regional Influences, 1975–90 1975. 38 Until the Desai government came to power, the intermittent bilateral talks conducted to resolve the Farakka issue exhibited an obvious decline in cordiality. H. H. Khan was taking a much stronger stand concerning Farakka, declaring that Bangladeshis would ‘fight to the last and shed our last drop of blood to establish our right’,40 and adding that ‘India wants to cripple us.

The essential reasons for the enduring stalemate of both issues had much in common, including ingredients such as India’s military superiority, territorial possession and control and the other state’s overwhelming sense of injustice, powerlessness and frustration. Although lacking the history of violence associated with the Kashmir dispute, the potential for violence erupting over Farakka and the sharing of Gangetic water cannot be ruled out. While Bangladesh may be far less capable than either India or Pakistan of waging a military campaign to settle an issue as vexing as the Farakka barrage, frustration and violence could be manifested in a number of other ways, such as mass demonstrations or support for rebel groups, either Indian or Bangladeshi.

A marked contrast can be observed between the relatively minor tension associated with the issues while the Janata party held power, and the bitterness which developed around them after the Janata collapse. Although little substantial progress was achieved in resolving the problems of border demarcation, the way in which the Desai government diplomatically addressed the issues differed particularly from the tactics used by the succeeding Indian government under Mrs Gandhi. By simply acknowledging that the problems, along with Bangladeshi concerns about Indian territorial designs, actually existed, and furthermore, required discussion and accommodation, the Janata regime was establishing a foundation for the possible, mutually satisfactory resolution of the border issues.

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