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Imagining Indianness: Cultural Identity and Literature

couvertureDiana Dimitrova and Thomas de Bruijn, eds.
Imagining Indianness: Cultural Identity and Literature
New York, Palgrave Macmillan, 2017, 166 p.
ISBN : 978-3319410142


First book to study Indianness in South Asia through literature and culture in a dialogical Bakhtinian way Pioneering project in the field of literature, culture, and anthropology. Includes the work of internationally renowned scholars from across the globe.

This book brings together several important essays examining the interface between identity, culture, and literature within the issue of cultural identity in South Asian literature. The book explores how one imagines national identity and how this concept is revealed in the narratives of the nation and the production of various cultural discourses. The collection of essays examines questions related to the interpretation of the Indian past and present, the meanings of ancient and venerated cultural symbols in ancient times and modern, while discussing the ideological implications of the interpretation of identity and “Indianness” and how they reflect and influence the power-structures of contemporary societies in South Asia. Thus, the book studies the various aspects of the on-going process of constructing, imagining, re-imagining, and narrating “Indianness”, as revealed in the literatures and cultures of India.

Diana Dimitrova is Professor of Hinduism and South Asian Religions at the University of Montreal, Canada. She is the author of Western Tradition and Naturalistic Hindi Theatre (2004), Gender, Religion, and Modern Hindi Drama (2008), and Hinduism and Hindi Theater (2016).

Thomas de Bruijn is an independent scholar and author of Ruby in the Dust: History and Poetry in Padmāvat by the South Asian Sufi Poet Muḥammad Jāyasī (2012) and co-editor of Circulation of Culture: Literature in Motion in Early Modern India (2014).