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Lecture | Leiden University Nationalism Network

The Multiple Lives of Indian Nationalism

Thursday 20 February 2020
Leiden University Nationalism Network
Van Wijkplaats
Van Wijkplaats 2
2311 BX Leiden

At independence, India was a very diverse country. So how did the Indian state succeed in keeping this enormous patchwork of religious, ethnic and linguistic groups and territories united, while stimulating a feeling of belonging to the overarching Indian nation? The lecture will briefly discuss the rise of Indian nationalism and the challenges of building a united nation after independence. I will also deal with recent changes in the nation-building strategies of the central government, while the focus will be particularly on the contested case of Kashmir, the border region that is disputed by both India and Pakistan.

Chitralekha Zutshi is Professor of History at William & Mary and the author of multiple books on national, regional and religious identities in South Asia, especially in the context of the contested region of Kashmir. Her latest book is Kashmir: Oxford India Short Introductions (2019).

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