Masks of Conquest

Literary Study and British Rule in India, Twenty-fifth Anniversary Edition

Gauri Viswanathan. With a new preface by the author

Columbia University Press

Masks of Conquest

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Pub Date: December 2014

ISBN: 9780231171694

240 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $30.00£24.00

Pub Date: December 2014

ISBN: 9780231539579

240 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $29.99£24.00

Masks of Conquest

Literary Study and British Rule in India, Twenty-fifth Anniversary Edition

Gauri Viswanathan. With a new preface by the author

Columbia University Press

A classic work in postcolonial studies, Masks of Conquest describes the introduction of English studies in India under British rule and illuminates the discipline's transcontinental movements and derivations, showing that the origins of English studies are as diverse and diffuse as its future shape. In her new preface, Gauri Viswanathan argues forcefully that the curricular study of English can no longer be understood innocently of or inattentively to the imperial contexts in which the discipline first articulated its mission.
The great merit of Viswanathan's closely argued and admirably researched book is to show that the exigencies of managing an empire played a far more important role than has hitherto been recognized in the emergence of the discipline as a social practice. History of European Ideas
Brilliantly working out in local detail a conception of literary education as a 'strategy of containment,' Masks of Conquest adds significantly both to the history of English education in relation to literary representation, and to the ongoing critical revaluation of the role of 'Literature' in modern culture. Papers in Language and Literature
Preface to the Twenty-Fifth Anniversary Edition
Acknowledgments
Introduction
1. The Beginnings of English Literary Study
2. Praeparatio Evangelica
3. "One Power, One Mind"
4. Rewriting English
5. Lessons of History
6. The Failure of English
7. Conclusion: Empire and the Western Canon
Notes
Select Bibliography
Index

About the Author

Gauri Viswanathan is Class of 1933 Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University. She is also the author of Outside the Fold: Conversion, Modernity, and Belief, which won the Harry Levin Prize awarded by the American Comparative Literature Association, the James Russell Lowell Prize awarded by the Modern Language Association of America, and the Ananda K. Coomaraswamy Prize awarded by the Association for Asian Studies. She coedits the series South Asia Across the Disciplines, published jointly by the university presses of Columbia, Chicago, and California.