Chapter

The Burden of the Past

B. R. Nanda

in Gandhi

Published in print February 2002 | ISBN: 9780195658279
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081394 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195658279.003.0002
The Burden of the Past

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This chapter discusses the history of Hindus and Muslims in India. The first section studies the Muslim invasion of India, which challenged Hinduism. It describes the State in medieval India as non-religious and non-secular, but controlled by the foreign élite who possessed superior military power. It then examines the structure of politics and the administration, which changed in response to the Indian situation. The following section focuses on the Hindu caste system and the effect the aristocratic culture had on the Hindus and the Muslims. Unlike the Hindus, the Muslims theoretically considered themselves as brothers and were split by their consciousness of class, race, economic status, and caste. The chapter also discusses the myths that became widespread during this time.

Keywords: Muslim invasion; Hinduism; medieval India; foreign élite; structure of politics; Indian situations; aristocratic culture; Hindu caste system

Chapter.  7013 words. 

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