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Author: Tim Allender

This book examines how the identities of women and girls in colonial India were shaped by interaction with each other, a masculine raj and feminist and non-feminist philanthropists situated mostly outside India. These identities were determined by the emotional and sexual needs of men, racial hybridity, mission and religious orders, European accomplishments mentalities, restricted teacher professionalism and far more expansive medical care interaction. This powerful vista is viewed mostly through the imagery of feminine sensibility rather than feminism as the most consistent but changing terrain of self-actualisation and dispute over the long time period of the book. National, international and colonial networks of interaction could build vibrant colonial, female identities, while just as easily creating dystopias of female exploitation and abuse. These networks were different in each period under study in the book, emerging and withering away as the interplay of state imperatives and female domesticity, professionalism and piety changed over time. Based on extensive archival work in many countries, the book provides important context for studies of late nineteenth and early twentieth-century colonial women in many colonial domains. The book also explains why colonial mentalities regarding females in India were so different to those on the nationalist side of the story in the early twentieth-century. This was even when feminist discourse was offered by a failing raj to claim new modernity after World War One and when key women activists in India chose, instead, to cross over to occupy spaces of Indian asceticism and community living.

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Vision, visibility and power in colonial India
Author: Niharika Dinkar

Beyond its simple valorisation as a symbol of knowledge and progress in post-Enlightenment narratives, light was central to the visual politics and imaginative geographies of empire. Empires of Light describes how imperial designations of ‘cities of light’ and ‘hearts of darkness’ were consonant with the dynamic material culture of light in the nineteenth-century industrialisation of light (in homes, streets, theatres, etc.) and its instrumentalisation through industries of representation. Empires of Light studies the material effects of light as power through the drama of imperial vision and its engagement with colonial India. It evaluates responses by the celebrated Indian painter Ravi Varma (1848–1906) to claim the centrality of light in imperial technologies of vision, not merely as an ideological effect but as a material presence that produces spaces and inscribes bodies.

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Empire, Identity and K. S. Ranjitsinhji
Editor: Satadru Sen

This book is a study of mobility, image and identity in colonial India and imperial Britain in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It is a model for studies of migrant figures like K.S. Ranjitsinhji who emerged during the imperial period. Ranjitsinhji is an important figure in the history of modern India and the British empire because he was recognized as a great athlete and described as such. The book focuses on four aspects of Ranjitsinhji's life as a colonial subject: race, money, loyalty and gender. It touches upon Ranjitsinhji's career as a cricketer in the race section. The issue of money gave Indian critics of Ranjitsinhji's regime the language they needed to condemn his personal and administrative priorities, and to portray him as self-indulgent. Ranjitsinhji lived his life as a player of multiple gender roles: sometimes serially, and on occasion simultaneously. His status as a "prince" - while not entirely fake - was fragile enough to be unreliable, and he worked hard to reinforce it even as he constructed his Englishness. Any Indian attempt to transcend race, culture, climate and political place by imitating an English institution and its product must be an unnatural act of insurgency. The disdain for colonial politics that was manifest in the "small rebellions" at the end of the world war converged with the colonized/Indian identity that was evident at the League of Nations. Between the war and his death, it is clear, Ranjitsinhji moved to maximize his autonomy in Nawanagar.

The white woman in colonial India, c. 1820–1930
Author: Indrani Sen

This book explores colonial gendered interactions, with a special focus on the white woman in colonial India. It examines missionary and memsahibs' colonial writings, probing their construction of Indian women of different classes and regions, such as zenana women, peasants, ayahs and wet-nurses. The three groups of white women focused upon are memsahibs, missionaries and, to a certain extent, ordinary soldiers' wives. Among white women in colonial India, it was the female missionaries who undoubtedly participated most closely in the colonial 'civilising mission'. The book addresses through a scrutiny of the literary works written by 'New Indian Women', such as Flora Annie Steel. Cross-racial gendered interactions were inflected by regional diversities, and the complexity of the category of the 'native woman'. The colonial household was a site of tension, and 'the anxieties of colonial rule manifest themselves most clearly in the home'. The dynamics of the memsahib-ayah relationship were rooted in race/class hierarchies, domestic power structures and predicated on the superiority of the colonising memsahib. The book also examines colonial medical texts, scrutinising how they wielded authoritative power over vulnerable young European women through the power/knowledge of their medical directives. Colonial discourse sought to project the white woman's vulnerability to specific mental health problems, as well as the problem of addiction of 'barrack wives'. Giving voice to the Indian woman, the book scrutinises the fiction of the first generation of western-educated Indian women who wrote in English, exploring their construction of white women and their negotiations with colonial modernities.

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Indrani Sen

The idea behind this book is to explore colonial gendered interactions, with a special focus on the white woman in colonial India. It examines a wide range of both literary and non-literary colonial narratives which offer a rich site for studying constructions of inter-racial interactions as well as gender representations against a grid of colonial transactions. My primary aim

in Gendered transactions
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Indrani Sen

influential, powerful male colonial physicians, which addressed the subject of the health of the white woman in colonial India – an aspect of the colonial medical narrative that remains almost completely invisibilised. 3 The male ‘medical gaze’ which was directed at white women in this discourse served to reinforce patriarchal constructions about the memsahib as frivolous and

in Gendered transactions
European women’s mental health and addiction in the late nineteenth century
Indrani Sen

We saw in the last chapter how colonial medical discourse tended to either marginalise European women in the colony or to focus on their general unfitness for colonial motherhood. In this chapter we shall turn our attention to the mental health of white women in colonial India, both middle-class memsahibs and lower-class barrack wives. 1 Colonial discourse

in Gendered transactions
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Satadru Sen

and identity in colonial India and imperial Britain in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It is not a biography of Ranjitsinhji. Several functional biographies already exist. The most significant is Roland Wild’s authorized biography, published soon after Ranjitsinhji’s death. 1 Like much of the early writing on Ranjitsinhji, Wild’s book is frankly hagiographie. As an authorized narrative, it approaches autobiography, and is thus marked by the unreliability as well as the privileged content that

in Migrant races
Andrew Teverson

and shedding three fairy tale drops of blood and never became involved in nationalist politics. In all cases, the autobiographical elements have been freely adapted to suit the demands of a fiction that is more concerned to use elements of fantasy to dramatise the experience of pre- and post-colonial India than it is to offer a veracious account of Rushdie’s childhood. The process Rushdie undergoes in his transformation of ‘real’ people into fictional characters is effectively illustrated by his use of a close friend of one of his aunts

in Salman Rushdie
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Learning femininity in colonial India, 1820–1932
Tim Allender

In 1888 Flora Annie Steel and Grace Gardiner published The Complete Indian Housekeeper and Cook . 1 This book, offering advice to European women on how to supervise their households in colonial India, proved very popular and ran to many editions. It contained the following guidance regarding the employment of Indian women to nurse European babies

in Learning femininity in colonial India, 1820–1932