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In: How India Clothed the World
In: How India Clothed the World
Author: Om Prakash

Abstract

The paper analyses the composition, social organization and wide range of activities of the Indian maritime merchant of the early modern period. Regional contrasts between Gujarat, the Coromandel coast and Bengal are discussed. The last section of the paper discusses the interaction between the Indian maritime merchants and the Europeans, both the corporate enterprises as well as private traders. It is argued that the Indian merchants displayed a remarkable degree of adaptiveness and resilience and refused to be overwhelmed by the competition provided by the Europeans. Cet article analyse la composition, l'organisation sociale, et les activités diverses qu'exploitent les marchands maritimes indiens du début de la période moderne. Les contrastes régionaux entre le Gujarat, la côte du Coromandel et le Bengal passeront la revue. La dernière section de l'article est consacrée à l'interaction entre les marchands maritimes indiens et les Européens, tant les grandes sociétés de négoce que la marine de commerce privée. Il est avancé que les marchands indiens se montrèrent très adaptifs et dynamiques et qu'ils refusèrent d'être subjugués par la concurrence survenue par l'arrivée des Européens.

In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
Author: Om Prakash

Abstract

The paper first situates the trade carried on by private European traders in the overall framework of the Indian Ocean trade in the early-modern period. It then discusses in some detail the trading network of private English merchants in the Western Indian Ocean with special reference to the Surat-Mocha link in the 1720s and the 1730s. The evidence base is provided mainly by the private papers of Sir Robert Cowan, governor of Bombay between 1729 and 1734 and a major English private trader, operating in collaboration with Henry Lowther, chief of the English factory at Surat. Cette contribution replace tout d'abord les activités commerciales menées par les négociants européens dans le cadre général du commerce de l'Océan indien au cours de la période moderne. Elle examine ensuite avec quelque détail le réseau commercial établi par des négociants anglais privés dans le secteur occidentalde l'Océan indien, plus particulièrement les relations instituées entre Surat et Moka dans les années 1720-1730. Les données présentées ont été tirées principalement de la correspondance privée de Sir Robert Cowan, gouverneur de Bombay (1729-1734) et grand négociant privé, associé à Henry Lowther, responsable du comptoir de Surat.

In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
In: Tracing the New Indian Diaspora

Tabish Khair’s novel, The Things About Thugs (2010), highlights many deeply vexed issues that are central to any discussion on colonial/postcolonial humanism. The importance of the novel lies in the fact that it goes on to evoke the diverse ways of construction of ‘the Other’ as dangerous, diabolical, and uncivilized by ‘the Self.’ Ostensibly, in this creation of the Other there is a continual denial of allowing the Other to relate to the Self, and at the same time, a tendency to cast the Self and the Other as simplified opposites of each other. Because there is a denial, there exists repercussions of flagrant contestations, which inevitably dismantle the peace and the dream of a utopian world. It is these vital issues of fear, horror and violence that Tabish Khair powerfully brings out in this novel. Khair’s novel can be read as a tool for analyzing how the Other has been viewed as problematic and a major form of fear. He does so by meticulously examining the polemical dichotomy of East and West, and (c)overtly suggesting his preference for highlighting issues of Otherness and ghost stories as a cogent alternative in order to break the negative stereotyping of the Other. The present paper seeks to study the representations of racial fear and horror in Khair’s The Things About Thugs by analysing the politics of negative stereotyping of Blacks/Asians by the Whites in the (post)colonial world.

In: Cultural Experiences of Fear, Horror and Terror
Editors: Jos Gommans and Om Prakash
This exciting and thought-provoking volume, written by a small number of outstanding scholars on colonial and medieval Indian history, ethnohistory and the new military history of South Asia forms the best tribute thinkable to one of the leading scholars in the field of Indian History, Professor Dirk Kolff.
Focusing on wider geographical as well as on more specific social and military aspects, the first section deals with issues of Islamic and European expansion in South Asia. The second section examines specific medieval topics such as military service and slavery, legitimacy and religious devotion. The third section represents Kolff's interest in colonial history and his more recent excursions into the realms of Subaltern and Cultural Studies.
A must for every library.
In: Tracing the New Indian Diaspora
Volume Editor: Om Prakash Dwivedi
The growing importance of the Indian diaspora is felt today across the globe due to its emergence as the second-largest dias¬poric community. By examining historical, socio-cultural, economic, political, and lite¬rary aspects of the Indian diaspora, this volume sets out to trace the latest devel¬opments in the field of Indian diaspora studies. It brings together essays by Indian and foreign scholars, thus providing an authoritative platform for discussions in which identities and affiliations are con¬tested and constituted through the hier¬archies of cross-cultural migration in this increasingly globalized world. This volume traces the transnational network of the Indian diaspora, and will prove of interest to scholars working in the fields of the Indian diaspora, diaspora theory, and cultural studies. Countries covered include Mauritius, Fiji, Singapore, Trinidad & Tobago, Guyana, Suriname, the UK, Ireland, the USA, Canada, Malaya, South Africa, and New Zealand. Creative writers dis¬cussed include Ramabai Espinet, Vikram Chandra, Rohinton Mistry, Chitra Banerjee Diva¬karuni, Nisha Ganatra, Jhumpa Lahiri, Kavery Nambisan, and Sarita Mandanna, along with the work of filmmakers (Mira Nair, Yash Chopra, Kabir Khan, Shuchi Kothari, Mandrika Rupa, Karan Johar, Sugu Pillay, Mallika Krishnamurthy, and Nisha Ganatra).