Nationalism versus Communalism

Gyanendra Pandey

in The Construction of Communalism in Colonial North India

Published in print August 2006 | ISBN: 9780198077305
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081097 | DOI:
Nationalism versus Communalism

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This chapter shows how from the 1920s, there arose a new contest between two different conceptions of nationalism — one that recognized the givenness of ‘pre-existing’ communities which were to form the basis of the new India, and another that challenged this view of history, past and present. Alongside these there developed yet another kind of nationalism/communalism that sought to establish a hierarchy of cultures among the cultures of India, and to assign to one or another a primary place in the future of the society. The contest between alternative views of nationalism and alternative readings of history was not settled in the 1920s or 1930s or 1940s, and it has not been settled conclusively to this day.

Keywords: conceptions of nationalism; new India; communalism; cultures of India; history

Chapter.  10837 words. 

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