Narrating Africa in South Asia  book cover
1st Edition

Narrating Africa in South Asia

Edited By

Mahmood Kooria

  • Available for pre-order on May 15, 2023. Item will ship after June 5, 2023
ISBN 9781032515151
June 5, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
142 Pages

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USD $170.00

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Book Description

The coastal belts and hinterlands of Africa and South Asia have historically shared a number of cultural traits, commands, commodities and cosmologies circulated on the wings of the monsoon winds. The forced and voluntary migrations of Asians and Africans across the Indian Ocean maritime littoral over several centuries have reverberated in the memories, literatures, travelogues, religious, architectural, and socio-political imaginations of both the regions. And, they continue to do so in various forms and platforms.

This book explores nuances of various narratives on these long-term transcultural exchanges with a special focus on India.  It explores the ways in which Africa and Africans have been narrated in South Asian history and culture. It unravels the nuanced layers of reflexive, rhetorical, stereotypical, populist, racialist, racist, and casteist frameworks that informed diverse narratives in vernacular texts, songs, films, paintings and newspaper reports. Emphasizing on interdisciplinary approaches of narratology, Afro-Asian studies, and Indian Ocean studies, the contributors enunciate how the African lives in South Asia have been selectively remembered or systematically forgotten. Through multi-sited ethnographies, multi-lingual archival researches and interdisciplinary frameworks, each chapter provides strong theoretical engagements on the basis of empirical research in such regions as Gujarat, Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Hyderabad and Mumbai. This book was originally published as a special issue of South Asian History and Culture.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: narrating Africa in South Asia

Mahmood Kooria

2. Eastern African doyens in South Asia: premodern Islamic intellectual interactions

Mahmood Kooria

3. From soldier to spectacle: Africans and the langar procession in Hyderabad

Benjamin B. Cohen

4. Africa in South Asia: hybridity in Sri Lankan Kaffrinha

Shihan de Silva Jayasuriya

5. Sidi voices and the Sidi Sayyid mosque: narratives of space and belonging

Beheroze Shroff and Sonal Mehta

6. Geographies of death and memory: shrines dedicated to African saints and spectral deities in India

Neelima Jeychandran

7. Translocal notions of belonging and authenticity: understanding race amongst the Siddis of Gujarat and Hyderabad

Khatija Sana Khader

8. From ‘Afro-Indians’ to ‘Afro-global’ networking: contemporary identification and unification processes among Siddis

S. Péquignot

9. Siddi marriage: re-signifying contract, transactions and identities

Fiona Jamal Almeida and Pashington Obeng

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Mahmood Kooria holds research positions at Leiden University (the Netherlands) and University of Bergen (Norway) and is a visiting faculty of history at Ashoka University (India). He has authored Islamic Law in Circulation (2022), and co-edited Islamic Law in the Indian Ocean World (2022) and Malabar in the Indian Ocean (2018).