The history of Oxford University Press in India is the history of Indian scholarly publishing. This book tells the story of OUP, or 'the Press', as it has always been called by its members, during the years from 1880 to 1947 - an era thatr coincided with the modernization drive of the Press at Oxford and its rapid international expansion.
The Indian Branch, established in 1912, was the result of the great transformatiuon OUP underwent in 1860s - from a primarily learned and religious publisher to an outward-oriented institution attempting to portray and interpret eastern civilizations tio the west.
Providing a background for these developments, the volume traces the careers of the fractions that fought over control of the Press till 1900, with an emphasis on their attitudes to intenational publishing and especially to India. The story then leaves Oxford, travels to London and then in 1912 to Bombay, now Mumbai.
With the prestige of Oxford preceding it and its unique international orientation, the Press found ready acceptance in India. Several prominent Indian scholars approached the Press, due in large measure to max Muller's 50-volume Sacred Books of the East. The Press's managers often liaised with and advised authors on matters of editing, documentation, adaption, and style.
After independence, under the leadership of R.E. Hawkins, the Indian branch began its India-centric publishing. Most notable among the early volumes were the jim Corbett titles, which continue to be a part of its corpus even today.
The superbly researched volume, based on extensive archival use in a unique, cogent, and spontaneous history of the Press in India. With its rare archival photographs and appendices, it will interst research scholars of Indian history, general readers interested in the Raj era, students, and all those associated with the publishing industry.
About the Author:
Rimi B. Chatterjee is a Lecturer in English at Jadavpur University, Kolkata. She has spent over ten years researching Empires of the Mind, done mainly in the archive of the Press, at their headquaters in Oxford.
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