I have now discovered Do not get angry, Dude in Germany along w/ a commemorative stamp. It was invented by the clerk Josef Friedrich Schmidt (1871-1948) for his three children and then commercialized in 1914. [originally published Aug 30, 2005 @ 9:03] This falls squarely in the well-established tradition, here at CM, of wasting time. [...]
Bob Stein was kind enough to invite me to a conversation with the historians (Stephen Brier, Joshua Brown, Ellen Noonan, Penee Bender) who wrote and maintain Who Built America? Working People and the Nation’s History. The first edition of that text was accompanied by a CD-ROM which was designed by Bob Stein’s company (with the [...]
Lately, we have had some insanely good weather. And I found myself wandering around snapping pics. Here are a few. More on flickr…
At Madison, Ram Guha gave a thoroughly entertaining talk on contemporary history. It was filled with nice anecdotes, pointed criticisms of “establishment” histories and historians, and a genuinely felt call for new directions in history writing. It was also overly broad, had outdated generalizations, mis-characterized historiographical developments and seemed a bit too caustic. I didn’t [...]
Via Rohit, I read Vinay Lal’s excellent, “The Gandhi Everyone Loves to Hate”, Economic & Political Weekly, Oct 4, 2008 [pdf]. I wanted highlight this footnote which discusses Gandhi’s historiography in the Western academy (with a nod towards his memory in Delhi) and his discussion of why the subaltern studies (or postcolonial studies, in general) [...]
The South Asia Madison conference is such a pleasant, communal affair. Every one is in good spirits and any testiness of panel Q&As never spills out into the lobby. It is the biggest gathering of practitioners of the South Asian intellectual trades – though, some disciplines are more gathered than others. (pre-modern folks are few, [...]
Am off to the conference. Holla, if you see me. I will post pictures, reports, when I return Sunday.
The non-juicy kind, at least. Look, I know dissertations are supposed to be shameful and to be hidden in the attic. I agree. Still, I thought that my gentle readers would want to know what I have been up to, when not putting up youtube songs. So, below the fold, you can read my defense presentation [...]
I defended. Deets, soon. Have a drink for me, gentle readers.
This one goes to the Urduphiles, out there. A proverb was used in a newspaper headline: “Hukmaran Hosh kay Nakhun lain”. Literally: Government should trim the nails (nakhun) of sense (hosh), the Jama’at-i Islami. (Leaving aside the JI from this discussion) Meaning that someone is being stupid, or doing something without much thought, and should [...]
Ralph Russell, noted Urdu scholar, and head of Urdu at SOAS from 1949-1981, has passed away. I am re-printing, with his permission, Professor C. M. Naim’s thoughts: Subaltern Urduwala: Anyone who came in contact with Ralph Russell (1918-2008) always remembered him as a remarkable man. Mostly because he not only knew Urdu so well but [...]
Since I will be publicly auditioning for this job, I present this without comment.
via BASAS: I wanted to draw your attention to a new annual accademic prize that has been instituted for Humanities and Social Science students studying at a university in Pakistan. The Falak Sufi Memorial Prize has been established to support innovative work on women and gender in South Asia by Pakistani undergraduate and graduate students. [...]
Edward Eastwick (1814–1883) joined the East India Company in 1836 as a cadet but was soon promoted because of his capacity for language acquisition. In 1845 the East India Company appointed him to the post of professor of Urdu at their officer-training school at Haileybury. He continued to serve the India Office in a number [...]
A week or so ago Stephen Mihm had an interesting article in Boston Globe, Everyone’s a historian now: How the Internet – and you – will make history deeper, richer, and more accurate. Mihm concentrated on the effect of crowd sourcing on history as a research/archival practice, but I have been thinking about the positive [...]
Via pdcs What is it that must precede the conveying of history? Must there not be the declaration of a double passion, an eros for the past and an ardor for the others in whose name there is a felt urgency to speak? To convey that-which-was in the light of this passion is to become [...]
The Winter 2008 issue of Public Culture covers “The Public Life of History” and has an intriguing piece by Dipesh Chakrabarty on the practice of history writing and the lessons from India. It is something that I will want to return, in the near future, for a thorough discussion. But, right now, I want to [...]
In a rather half-hearted piece for TNR, Imperial Illusions, Amartya Sen spends some time ruminating on the good/bad of British colonialism in India with an eye towards comparison with the American imperialism. He offers a sketch of the 2,000 year old pre-history of British rule in India as a “country” with “global influence”. Though, he [...]
A few weeks ago, danah boyd wrote her resolve to publish only in Open Access journals. I couldn’t agree more – being an ardent supporter of scholarship that is freely accessible. One of my biggest complaint about our academic world is about the inaccessibility of research to anyone without institutional affiliation or a hefty bank [...]