Blending Nation and Region: Essays in Honour of Late Professor Amalendu Guha
Edited by Sajal Nag and Ishrat Alam
Late Professor Amalendu Guha belonged to that first generation of historians in post-independent India who not just gave Indian history an identity but were also responsible for its decolonization, modernization and internationalization. When most historians were writing macro history, Professor Guha concentrated on regional history and brought into focus a region of India about which very little was then known-north-east India. Besides being an eminent scholar, he was a firstrate poet in Assamese, a fearless political activist, as well as a political theorist. He passed away in May 2015.
In this commemoration volume to Professor Guha, eminent historians of India, his contemporaries, and a host of younger scholars who have grown up following his scholarship gather to offer a scholarly tribute to him through their own research which discuss, debate, discover and controvert a wide array of themes of Indian history. Although other regions such as north and south India and even Ceylon are covered in some of the contributions, this volume focuses specially on north-east India since this was the primary region of Professor Guha's interest.
Some of the issues discussed in this volume include Indian demographic history; the army and social bases of patronage in early India; forests in Mughal India; Euro-Asian trade relationship in the seventeenth century; the culture of dowry; transnationalism and transhumanism of Tagore and Aurobindo; British expansion into northern East Bengal; frontier small wars; application of the concept of martial race on certain communities; colonial masculinity; law and labour in colonial tea plantations; wastelands as a colonial construct; East Bengali settlers in the Assamese public sphere; religious change in north-east India; flood control in colonial Assam; propaganda and tribal response during the Second World War in northeast India; language and nationalities in nineteenth-century Assam; and the colonial State and ethno-genesis in the north-east.