Tagore, Nationalism and Cosmopolitanism : Perceptions, Contestations and Contemporary Relevance book cover
1st Edition

Tagore, Nationalism and Cosmopolitanism
Perceptions, Contestations and Contemporary Relevance

Edited By

Mohammad A. Quayum

ISBN 9781032175096
Published September 30, 2021 by Routledge India
300 Pages

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Book Description

This book is a fresh examination of Rabindranath Tagore’s ideas on nationalism and his rhetoric of cosmopolitanism. It critically analyses the poetics and the politics of his works and specifically responds to Tagore’s three lectures on nationalism delivered during the early years of the twentieth century and later compiled in his book Nationalism (1917).

This volume:

  • Discusses Tagore’s perception of nationalism – the many-sidedness of his engagement with nationalism, the root causes of his anathema against the ideology, ambiguities and limitations associated with his perception and his alternative vision of cosmopolitanism or global unity;

  • Cross-examines an alternative view of cosmopolitanism based on Tagore’s inclusivist ideology to “seek my compatriots all over the world”;

  • Explores how his ideas on nationalism and cosmopolitanism found myriad expressions across his works – in prose, fiction, poetry, travelogue, songs – as well as in the legacy of cinematic adaptations of his writings;

  • Investigates the relevance of Tagore’s thoughts on nationalism and cosmopolitanism in relation to the contemporary rise of religious, nationalist and sectarian violence in the twenty-first century.

A key study on the relevance of Tagore’s political philosophy in the contemporary world with contributions from eminent Tagore scholars in South Asia as well as the West, this book will be of great interest to readers and researchers in the fields of literature, political science, cultural studies, philosophy and Asian studies.

Table of Contents


Mohammad A. Quayum

Part I: Tagore, Nationalism and Cosmopolitanism: Perceptions, Contestations, Ambiguities, Limitations and Contemporary Relevance

1. Antinomies of Nationalism and Rabindranath Tagore

Sabyasachi Bhattacharya

2. Rabindranath Tagore’s Engagement with Nationalism

Serajul Islam Chowdhury

3. Imagining "One World": Rabindranath Tagore’s Critique of Nationalism

Mohammad A. Quayum

4. Visva-Bharati: Tagore’s Response to Aggressive Nationalism?

Kathleen M. O’Connell

5. Nationalism Then and Now: An Exploration of Tagore’s Relevance Today

Christine Marsh

6. Pilgrim Man: Rabindranath Tagore’s Cosmopolitanism and Cosmic Consciousness

Narasingha P. Sil

7. Tagore, Cosmopolitanism and Secular Ethic

Satish C. Aikant

8. For Love of Country: Debating Martha Nussbaum on Cosmopolitanism in Tagore

Bindu Puri

Part II: Nationalism and Cosmopolitanism: Interrogating the Genres

9. Rabindranath Tagore: Nationalism and Poetry – Message of Universal Humanism

Shanta Acharya

10. "Hungry Stone": Colonial Uncanny and the Return of the Repressed

Dipankar Roy

11. Narrating Nation, Society, Cosmopolitanism and Culture: A Study of Three Stories by Rabindranath Tagore

Lalita Pandit Hogan

12. Finding One’s Home Abroad: Tagore’s Thinking on Nation in the Travelogues to Japan and Persia

Anindya Bhattacharya

13. On Music and Memory: Rabindranath Tagore’s Songs of Nature in the Age of Nationalism

Saurav Dasthakur

14. Cinematic Representations of Rabindranath Tagore’s Views of Nationalism: The Figure of the "Patriot" in Ghare Baire and Elar Char Adhyay

Srimati Mukherjee

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Mohammad A. Quayum is Professor of English at International Islamic University Malaysia and Adjunct Professor at Flinders University and the University of South Australia. His books on Tagore include Beyond Boundaries: Critical Essays on Rabindranath Tagore (2014), and Rabindranath Tagore: The Ruined Nest and Other Stories (trans.; 2014).