1st Edition

Technologies of Knowledge Rethinking the Archive in Modern South Asia

Edited By Aryendra Chakravartty, Samiparna Samanta Copyright 2025
    154 Pages
    by Routledge India

    This book traces the role of technology in shaping, curating, disseminating and archiving knowledge and life in South Asia. It focuses on empirical studies of transformative social processes unleashed by technological intervention in colonial and postcolonial contexts, which have changed our everyday lives and created new sites of domination and resistance, new archives of history. 

    Unravelling technology as an indicator of South Asia’s encounter with modernity, the essays in the volume interrogate how technology was witnessed in the production of culture, historicizing, preservation of the past, and maintenance of the heritage sites. In addition to examining the critical role of creative and commercial networks in establishing language and script preference, the volume also scans the significant contribution of technology in bringing a digital revolution that changed the face of tourism, changed its relationship with society and its sociological approaches. The volume also highlights how technology in the colonial context was used as an element of imperial domination and investigates technology as a mode of knowledge production.

    Revealing the inevitable and recognizing role of technology in shaping our past, this volume will be of great interest to scholars and researchers of science and technology studies, digital humanities, South Asian studies, modern history, tourism and architecture.



    Introduction: Understanding and Representing Colonial India

    Aryendra Chakravartty and Samiparna Samanta                    



    1. The Making of a City: Impetuosity and Interpolations                               

    Shrimoyee Basu Thakurta                                                                                 


    2. From Purity to Hygiene: Bhadralok Domesticity and the Restructuring of Bengali Household

    Suparna Chakraborty                                                                                      


    3. Knowledge Technology Contested: Cholera, Commerce and Quarantine in Nineteenth-Century India                                                                

    Arabinda Samanta


    4. Preparing the ‘Veterinary Baboo’: The Pupils and Pedagogy at Bengal Veterinary College C. 1893-1920                                                            

    Aritri Chakrabarti


    5. The White Man As A Burden on History: A Centre Of Oriental Culture, 1942- 1947                    

    Dharitri Bhattacharya


    6. Alternative Technologies: A Different Road to Development         

    Kaushalya Bajpayee


    Aryendra Chakravartty is an Associate Professor of History at Stephen F. Austin State University where he teaches courses on World History, South Asia, and British Empire. His research interest focuses on identity and belonging, and regionalism and nationalism in modern South Asia. He has published in multiple academic journals including the Modern Asian Studies, Indian Economic and Social History Review, and Indian Historical Review. He is currently completing his book Region in the Making of a Nation: Bihar in Colonial India.  

    Samiparna Samanta is a Professor of History at Jindal Global Law School, O. P Jindal Global University (JGU), India. She teaches courses on world societies, British Empire, modern South Asia and social history of law. Her research focuses on history of science, medicine, and colonialism. Her book Meat, Mercy, and Morality: Animals and Humanitarianism in Colonial Bengal 1850-1920 (2021) disentangles complex discourses around humanitarianism. Her current book project investigates the lives of human cadavers to write a history of the anatomical body.