Chapter

Introduction

Satoshi Mizutani

in The Meaning of White

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199697700
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191732102 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199697700.003.0001

Series: Oxford Historical Monographs

Introduction

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This chapter clarifies the book’s aim, scope, and approach. It first explains why and how the emergence of the ‘domiciled community’ (made of mixed-descent ‘Eurasians’ and ‘Domiciled Europeans’) in colonial India should be seen as inseparably linked to the historical construction of ‘whiteness’ under British rule and to the various socio-cultural measures which were meant to discipline its boundaries. The prime task of the book, the chapter argues, is to reveal the precise ways in which the existence of the community was identified as a problem—or as what was then called the ‘Eurasian Question’—and to ponder the deeper historical meanings of such problematization itself. The chapter then lays out the book’s theoretical frameworks by situating it within current theoretical debates in post/colonial studies. Finally, the chapter discusses the scope and limits of the book in terms of historical span, geographical areas, primary sources.

Keywords: whiteness; boundaries; India; domiciled community; post/colonial studies; theoretical frameworks

Chapter.  5756 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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