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The Empire of Clouds in north-east India

In 1841, the Welsh sent their first missionary, Thomas Jones, to evangelise the tribal peoples of the Khasi Hills of north-east India. This book follows Jones from rural Wales to Cherrapunji, the wettest place on earth and now one of the most Christianised parts of India. It is about the piety and practices, the perceptions and prejudices of people in early nineteenth century Wales. The book is also about the ways in which the religious ambitions of those same people operated upon the lives and ideas of indigenous societies of the distant Khasi Hills of north-eastern India. It foregrounds broader political, scientific, racial and military ideologies that mobilised the Khasi Hills into an interconnected network of imperial control. Its themes are universal: crises of authority, the loneliness of geographical isolation, sexual scandal, greed and exploitation, personal and institutional dogma, individual and group morality. In analysing the individual lives that flash in and out of this history, the book is a performance within the effort to break down the many dimensions of distance that the imperial scene prescribes. It pays attention to a 'networked conception of imperial interconnection'. The book discusses Jones's evangelising among the Khasis as well as his conflicts with church and state authority. It also discusses some aspects of the micro-politics of mission and state in the two decades immediately following Thomas Jones's death. While the Welsh missionary impact was significant, its 'success' or indeed its novelty, needs to be measured against the pre-existing activities of British imperialists.

Monstrous marriage, maternity, and the politics of embodiment

sexual transformation has been achieved and sustained scientifically, ideologically, and psychologically by her mad father’s use, respectively, of male hormones and brainwashing using an essentialist, dichotomous worldview that regards women as life-givers and men as life-takers (118), Banks enacts a brilliant structural sleight of hand. He cleverly ‘doubles’ his narrative generically as a work of Gothic and Female Gothic fiction. In keeping with the latter literary form, Frances’s systematic isolation and imprisonment combines with her detective-style process of

in Adapting Frankenstein

presented idyllic visions of clean, sanitary and healthy cities. For them, the removal of butchers from the city would modernise, improve and reform the consistency of urban life itself. This rhetoric – grounded in new forms of sanitary science – antagonised traders who rebelled against their public demonisation and rallied against the penetrative scientific ideologies that underpinned their social castigation. Similar debates surfaced in Belfast. Concern over diseased meat consumption mounted in the late 1890s. Then, only meat produced in Belfast was liable for

in Reforming food in post-Famine Ireland

whose disadvantageous circumstances dictated hunger, rather than a lack of emotional feeling towards her children. ‘No mothers are tenderer than the Irish mothers’, so Gonne later claimed in Bean hÉireann, ‘and it is absurd to suppose a mother would let her children go hungry if she saw any way of preventing it, and there is a side of this children’s tragedy of which I dare hardly think, and that is the agony of the mothers who watch their little ones fading and know the cause and cannot remedy it.’57 Gonne also implicitly attacked the nature of the medico-scientific

in Reforming food in post-Famine Ireland
Abstract only

. Lefort, The Political Forms of Modern Society: Bureaucracy, Democracy, Totalitarianism (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1986), p. 305. 29 Similar criticisms were made in response to Lefort’s paper ‘The Question of Democracy’ delivered at the Centre for Philosophical Research on the Political at the Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris in 1982 – including those from Philipe LacoueLabarth and Jean-Luc Nancy, who suggested that a kind of ‘soft’ invisible totalitarianism was operating in Western democracies in the form of techno-scientific ideology. See discussion of this debate in

in Unstable universalities
Towards a global synthesis

protest. This was at a time long before an oppressive bureaucratic framework had armed itself with a more inflexible scientific ideology of forestry. The fact that the early Forest departments in the Bombay and Madras Presidencies were run by officers of the Medical Service helps to account for this. In the Madras Forest Department, for example, founded in 1856 by Hugh Cleghorn, the senior officers of the service were all

in Imperialism and the natural world