Friday, November 16, 2012

Kumar reviews Mukherjee, "India in the Shadows of Empire"

Via H-Law, we have word of a review (commissioned by H-Asia) of Mithi Mukherjee, India in the Shadows of Empire: A Legal and Political History, 1774-1950 (Oxford University Press, 2010).

Prakash Kumar (Colorado State University) offers this introduction:
Mithi Mukherjee’s book examines the history of the empire’s lingering presence in and the colonial history of South Asia through the lens of laws and legal institutions, modes, and discourses. Mukherjee argues persuasively for the need to ground our understanding of postcolonial political formations in India in the colonial history of political discourses. She extends Michel Foucault’s analysis to the political domain and deploys the categories of discourse and teleology (explained as goal-specific discourse) to remind readers that polity and political processes in India should not be simply understood as if they had no history and as if they originated sui generis. Instead, she maintains, this polity has a political and cultural genealogy, and is a product of discourses and conflicts of the colonial past.
Read on here.

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