Chapter

Hierarchies of Age and Gender in the Mughal Construction of Domesticity and Empire

Ruby Lal

in Rereading the Black Legend

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print January 2008 | ISBN: 9780226307213
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226307244 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226307244.003.0003
Hierarchies of Age and Gender in the Mughal Construction of Domesticity and Empire

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This chapter examines the role of gender and age in the construction of domesticity in the Mughal Empire. It argues that the increasing number and invisibility of women in the imperial harem in Mughal India marked the changing claims by the sultan to a differentiating divinity. This chapter also suggests that the secreting of the women allowed Hindu and Muslim ritual practices to coexist so that the two cultures could be connected and that the mixing of cultures took place behind the mystifying screens of the harem itself.

Keywords: domesticity; gender; age; Mughal Empire; women; imperial harem; ritual practices; mixing of cultures

Chapter.  9159 words. 

Subjects: Colonialism and Imperialism

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