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Moveable Type (Book History in India)
Moveable Type (Book History in India)
Description

About the Book

Book history is an emerging discipline in India. The editors of the present volume began the work of consolidating the dispersed writings in the field with Print Areas: Book History in India (Permanent Black, 2004). Reviewers welcomed that volume as the first significant Indian contribution to an academic discourse that is fast changing literary scholarship and challenging assumptions, if not practices, in the social sciences.

Moveable Type brings together a wider. variety of the best recent work on the subject, combining compilation of primary data with rigorous historical analysis. Contributions range from a magisterial history of censorship in colonial India to reflections on the social construction of texts. Several essays focus on the study of historically symptomatic cases, such as the making of a Tamil encyclopaedia and the special number of a Hindi periodical.

This collection is the latest in a series that promises to be an indispensable resource for future research in history, literature, textual scholarship, editorial theory, and cultural studies.

About the Author

Swap an Chakravorty is Professor of English, Jadavpur University. He is the author of Society and Politics in the Plays of Thomas Middleton (1996) and contributory editor of The Oxford Middleton (2007). He has co-edited Print Areas: Book History in India (2004) with Abhijit Gupta. Chakravorty also writes in Bengali

and has recently edited Mudraner sanskriti 0 bangla boi (2007).

Abhijit Gupta is Reader in English, Jadavpur University. He has co-edited Print Areas: Book History in India (2004) with Swapan Chakravorty. He is an associate editor of The Oxford Companion to the Book, and has finished a short-title catalogue of Bengali books over 1801-67.

Introduction

Moveable type carries on the work begun with the publication of Print Areas in 2003. The aim of the series is to showcase new research in what is now a fairly broad and deep field-the history of the book in the Indian subcontinent. The geographical and national boundaries of the project are more in the way of a rough guide, and we make no attempt to impose a regional, national or linguistic straitjacket on the material that we publish.

A book about books needs to reflect on its own integrity, if not on the coherence of the discipline it claims to represent. Histories of the book have taught us that a book is as much praxis as product, and that this is true of both its physical form and content. Histories of the Indian book remain the core enterprise of the series, but such histories are destined to have their impact on the ways Indian scholars think of textual scholarship, literary theory and editorial practice. Contributions that explore such links are a necessary part of the project, although one needs to keep the hospitable instincts of the discipline within definable limits. Books are made of texts, but protocols of textual histories that serenely ignore such things as technology, trade and regulations that enable and control textual dissemination are most certainly beyond our brief This will be borne out by the range of work featured in this particular volume. They range from vast, panoptic accounts of regimes at work to the intimate history of one unique copy and its equally unique reader. We are particularly happy to be able to carry the first part of Graham Shaw's magisterial account of the Raj's censorship of political literature in India and the strategies used to circumvent such control. Shaw unravels a tangled skein which connects the fate of the book in India with such far-flung locations as Basle, London, Marseille and Hamburg. Rimi B. Charterjee's account of book piracy under the Raj interrogates the politics of transgression and brings to light illicit histories of the book. The essays by Alexis Tadie and Pankaj Jha, on the other hand, treat of single books and explore the interface between speech and writing, and the printed and manuscript words. The complex dialectics between script and print is also the focus of Sukanta Chaudhuri's essay. A.R. Venkatachalapathy provides a detailed account of the varying fortunes of a Tamil encyclopaedia project while Avinash Kumar's reports on the rise of nationalism in the Hindi public sphere through a case study of a periodical.

In recent years, a number of national book history projects have been started, chiefly in Europe and North America. This approach is unlikely to work in a country like India, where linguistic and cultural differences are too diverse to be accommodated within one discursive framework. In the highly specialized academic climate that we inhabit, it is rare to find a scholar who is familiar with more than one Indian language and that is an impediment in the way of dialogue. Of course, much of modern Indian print history has a common reference point in the British Raj but this is by no means the whole or only story. In the nineteenth as well as twentieth centuries, there was an asronishing degree of mobility displayed by writers, booksellers and printers cutting across linguistic and regional divides. This is a story which needs to be told, but for that we have to assemble hard data about the various personnel associated with the book trade. Along with analytical studies, therefore, we are in urgent need of such tools as checklists, directories, dictionaries, bibliographies, trade catalogues and so on, which will enable us to create a set of cartographies of the book in India. Without these, the field will be in danger of exhausting itself in the near future.

Contents

  List of Contributors Introduction vii
  Introduction 1
1 A Table Laden with Good Things: Reading a Fourteenth-century Sufi Text 3
2 Pirates and Philanthropists: British Publishers and Copyright in India, 1880-1935 26
3 A Kipling Reader: Modes of Appropriation of Books in Colonial India 78
4 On the Wrong End of the Raj: Some Aspects of Censorship in British India and its Circumvention, 1920s-1940s 94
5 Nationalism as Bestseller: The Case of Chand's 'Phansi Ank' Avinash Kumar 172
6 Kalaikkalanjiyam: The Making of the Tamil Encyclopaedia, 1947-1968 200
7 The Writer's Hand: Authorial Presence in Print 224
  Index 247

 

<
Sample Pages

















Moveable Type (Book History in India)

Item Code:
NAG003
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2008
Publisher:
ISBN:
9788178242170
Language:
English
Size:
8.5 inch X 5.5 inch
Pages:
270
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 454 gms
Price:
$33.50
Discounted:
$25.12   Shipping Free
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About the Book

Book history is an emerging discipline in India. The editors of the present volume began the work of consolidating the dispersed writings in the field with Print Areas: Book History in India (Permanent Black, 2004). Reviewers welcomed that volume as the first significant Indian contribution to an academic discourse that is fast changing literary scholarship and challenging assumptions, if not practices, in the social sciences.

Moveable Type brings together a wider. variety of the best recent work on the subject, combining compilation of primary data with rigorous historical analysis. Contributions range from a magisterial history of censorship in colonial India to reflections on the social construction of texts. Several essays focus on the study of historically symptomatic cases, such as the making of a Tamil encyclopaedia and the special number of a Hindi periodical.

This collection is the latest in a series that promises to be an indispensable resource for future research in history, literature, textual scholarship, editorial theory, and cultural studies.

About the Author

Swap an Chakravorty is Professor of English, Jadavpur University. He is the author of Society and Politics in the Plays of Thomas Middleton (1996) and contributory editor of The Oxford Middleton (2007). He has co-edited Print Areas: Book History in India (2004) with Abhijit Gupta. Chakravorty also writes in Bengali

and has recently edited Mudraner sanskriti 0 bangla boi (2007).

Abhijit Gupta is Reader in English, Jadavpur University. He has co-edited Print Areas: Book History in India (2004) with Swapan Chakravorty. He is an associate editor of The Oxford Companion to the Book, and has finished a short-title catalogue of Bengali books over 1801-67.

Introduction

Moveable type carries on the work begun with the publication of Print Areas in 2003. The aim of the series is to showcase new research in what is now a fairly broad and deep field-the history of the book in the Indian subcontinent. The geographical and national boundaries of the project are more in the way of a rough guide, and we make no attempt to impose a regional, national or linguistic straitjacket on the material that we publish.

A book about books needs to reflect on its own integrity, if not on the coherence of the discipline it claims to represent. Histories of the book have taught us that a book is as much praxis as product, and that this is true of both its physical form and content. Histories of the Indian book remain the core enterprise of the series, but such histories are destined to have their impact on the ways Indian scholars think of textual scholarship, literary theory and editorial practice. Contributions that explore such links are a necessary part of the project, although one needs to keep the hospitable instincts of the discipline within definable limits. Books are made of texts, but protocols of textual histories that serenely ignore such things as technology, trade and regulations that enable and control textual dissemination are most certainly beyond our brief This will be borne out by the range of work featured in this particular volume. They range from vast, panoptic accounts of regimes at work to the intimate history of one unique copy and its equally unique reader. We are particularly happy to be able to carry the first part of Graham Shaw's magisterial account of the Raj's censorship of political literature in India and the strategies used to circumvent such control. Shaw unravels a tangled skein which connects the fate of the book in India with such far-flung locations as Basle, London, Marseille and Hamburg. Rimi B. Charterjee's account of book piracy under the Raj interrogates the politics of transgression and brings to light illicit histories of the book. The essays by Alexis Tadie and Pankaj Jha, on the other hand, treat of single books and explore the interface between speech and writing, and the printed and manuscript words. The complex dialectics between script and print is also the focus of Sukanta Chaudhuri's essay. A.R. Venkatachalapathy provides a detailed account of the varying fortunes of a Tamil encyclopaedia project while Avinash Kumar's reports on the rise of nationalism in the Hindi public sphere through a case study of a periodical.

In recent years, a number of national book history projects have been started, chiefly in Europe and North America. This approach is unlikely to work in a country like India, where linguistic and cultural differences are too diverse to be accommodated within one discursive framework. In the highly specialized academic climate that we inhabit, it is rare to find a scholar who is familiar with more than one Indian language and that is an impediment in the way of dialogue. Of course, much of modern Indian print history has a common reference point in the British Raj but this is by no means the whole or only story. In the nineteenth as well as twentieth centuries, there was an asronishing degree of mobility displayed by writers, booksellers and printers cutting across linguistic and regional divides. This is a story which needs to be told, but for that we have to assemble hard data about the various personnel associated with the book trade. Along with analytical studies, therefore, we are in urgent need of such tools as checklists, directories, dictionaries, bibliographies, trade catalogues and so on, which will enable us to create a set of cartographies of the book in India. Without these, the field will be in danger of exhausting itself in the near future.

Contents

  List of Contributors Introduction vii
  Introduction 1
1 A Table Laden with Good Things: Reading a Fourteenth-century Sufi Text 3
2 Pirates and Philanthropists: British Publishers and Copyright in India, 1880-1935 26
3 A Kipling Reader: Modes of Appropriation of Books in Colonial India 78
4 On the Wrong End of the Raj: Some Aspects of Censorship in British India and its Circumvention, 1920s-1940s 94
5 Nationalism as Bestseller: The Case of Chand's 'Phansi Ank' Avinash Kumar 172
6 Kalaikkalanjiyam: The Making of the Tamil Encyclopaedia, 1947-1968 200
7 The Writer's Hand: Authorial Presence in Print 224
  Index 247

 

<
Sample Pages

















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