06 September, 2012

Pathway to India’s Partition (Volume I): The Foundations of Muslim Nationalism

Pathway to India’s Partition (Volume I): The Foundations of Muslim Nationalism

By - Bimal Prasad

This is the first of a three-volume study of the background of India’s Partition, decidedly one of the seminal developments in the history of the subcontinent. Rejecting the widely held view that Partition was the result mainly of British manipulation and the mistakes or intransigence of certain Indian leaders, the author asserts that it was the result primarily of a powerful movement of Muslim nationalism. This volume is devoted to a discussion of this foundation of that nationalism.

Dealing at the outset with the legacy of the past, the author disputes the theory of a perpetual, centuries-old conflict between two antagonistic civilisations in the political arena. At the same time he shows how both the Muslim and the Hindu elites had already become conscious of their separate identities before the era of their modern political awakening began in the second half of the nineteenth century.

He then moves on to discuss the nature of the economic divide between the two communities and the intellectual as well as emotional environment of the Muslim elite. At the end the focus turns to Hindu nationalism and British policy both of which, in varying degrees, worked as props for Muslim nationalism.

In every chapter an effort has been made to synthesize the results of latest researchers as also to prevent fresh interpretations.

Professor Bimal Prasad, formerly Professor of South Asian Studies and Dean, School of international Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (New Delhi) and India’s Ambassador to Nepal, is at present Honorary Director, Rajendra Prasad Academy (New Delhi).

ISBN  81-7304-248-9    1999   320p.   Rs.600/ pounds 50

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