The Majālis-i Jahāngīrī (1608-11): Dialogue and Asiatic Otherness at the Mughal Court

In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
Corinne Lefèvre
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Building on the literary traditions of munāẓara (disputation) and malfūẓāt (teachings of a Sufi master), the Majālis-i Jahāngīrī (Assemblies of Jahāngīr) constitute a fundamentally dialogical work, in form as well as function. An account of the night-time sessions presided over by Emperor Jahāngīr from 1608 to 1611, this source highlights the Mughals’ will to assert their power on a Eurasian scale and the central role played by Iran, Central Asia, and Hindustan in the elaboration of imperial ideology and identity. It thus opens a new window into the mental representations and hierarchies that underlay the much celebrated Mughal cosmopolitanism.

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