Beyond Belief: India and the Politics of Postcolonial Nationalism / Edition 1

Beyond Belief: India and the Politics of Postcolonial Nationalism / Edition 1

by Srirupa Roy
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0822340011

ISBN-13: 9780822340010

Pub. Date: 05/28/2007

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

Beyond Belief is a bold rethinking of the formation and consolidation of nation-state ideologies. Analyzing India during the first two decades following its foundation as a sovereign nation-state in 1947, Srirupa Roy explores how nationalists are turned into nationals, subjects into citizens, and the colonial state into a sovereign nation-state. Roy argues

Overview

Beyond Belief is a bold rethinking of the formation and consolidation of nation-state ideologies. Analyzing India during the first two decades following its foundation as a sovereign nation-state in 1947, Srirupa Roy explores how nationalists are turned into nationals, subjects into citizens, and the colonial state into a sovereign nation-state. Roy argues that the postcolonial nation-state is consolidated not, as many have asserted, by efforts to imagine a shared cultural community, but rather by the production of a recognizable and authoritative identity for the state. This project—of making the state the entity identified as the nation’s authoritative representative—emphasizes the natural cultural diversity of the nation and upholds the state as the sole unifier or manager of the “naturally” fragmented nation; the state is unified through diversity.

Roy considers several different ways that identification with the Indian nation-state was produced and consolidated during the 1950s and 1960s. She looks at how the Films Division of India, a state-owned documentary and newsreel production agency, allowed national audiences to “see the state”; how the “unity in diversity” formation of nationhood was reinforced in commemorations of India’s annual Republic Day; and how the government produced a policy discourse claiming that scientific development was the ultimate national need and the most pressing priority for the state to address. She also analyzes the fate of the steel towns—industrial townships built to house the workers of nationalized steel plants—which were upheld as the exemplary national spaces of the new India. By prioritizing the role of actual manifestations of and encounters with the state, Roy moves beyond theories of nationalism and state formation based on collective belief.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822340010
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
05/28/2007
Series:
Politics, History, and Culture
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
264
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.50(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments vii

Introduction. Imagining Institutions, Instituting Diversity: Toward a Theory of Nation-State Formation 1

1. Moving Pictures: The Films Division of India and the Visual Practices of the Nation-State 32

2. Marching in Time: Republic Day Parades and the Ritual Practices of the Nation-State 66

3. Indian Darkness: Science, Development, and the Needs Discourse of the Nation-State 105

4. Cities of Hope: Steel Townships and the Spatial Practices of the Nation-State 133

Conclusion. After Midnight 157

Notes 171

Bibliography 219

Index 237

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