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Making a Muslim

Making a Muslim

Reading Publics and Contesting Identities in Nineteenth-Century North India

by S. Akbar Zaidi
Publication Date: 31/07/2021
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Using primarily Urdu sources from the nineteenth century, this book allows us to rethink notions of 'the Muslim', in its numerous, complex and often contradictory forms, which emerged in colonial North India after 1857. Allowing the self-representation of Muslimness and its manifestations to emerge, it contrasts how the colonial British 'made Muslims' very differently compared to how the community envisaged themselves. A key argument made here contests the general sense of the narrative of lamentation, decay, decline, and a sense of self-pity and ruination, by proposing a different condition, that of zillat, a condition which gave rise to much self-reflection resulting in action, even if it was in the form of writing and expression. By questioning how and when a Muslim community emerged in colonial India, the book unsettles the teleological explanation of the Partition of India and the making of Pakistan.
Social & cultural history
Publication Date:
Cambridge University Press
Country of origin:
United Kingdom

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