Rajeev is currently planning a course on South Asia History 1600-present [!] and pdcs is planning 5 courses as well. Inevitably, the conversations are on what texts to assign and to what purpose. This happens every spring as we all sit down to plan Fall courses. I asked for suggestions for an Intro on Islamic history and got some recommendations before which proved quite helpful. So, in the interest of gathering some more knowledge into the pool [incidentally, the ultimate pool will be the Initiative once I actually start working on it], I thought to open the discussion on what general intro South Asia texts would you recommend? Any favs? Any hatez? What has good narrative? nice maps? glossary? Any contenders out of left field? Anyone pay attention to Pakistan or Bangladesh or Nepal?
A list of possibilties:
- David Ludden’s India & South Asia: A Short History.
- John Keay’s India: A History
- Metcalfs’ A Concise History of India
- Jalal & Bose’s Modern South Asia
- Claude Markovits’ History of Modern India 1480-1950.
I have taught the Metcalf and Jalal to varied results. The chapter/essay approach leaves a bit to be desired in my head. Haven’t seen Markovits but Ludden’s is quite good, I think. What say ye?