The History of the Book in South Asia  book cover
1st Edition

The History of the Book in South Asia

Edited By

Francesca Orsini

ISBN 9781409437840
Published July 4, 2013 by Routledge
624 Pages

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Book Description

The History of the Book in South Asia covers not only the various modern states that make up South Asia today but also a multitude of languages and scripts. For centuries it was manuscripts that dominated book production and circulation, and printing technology only began to make an impact in the late eighteenth century. Print flourished in the colonial period and in particular lithographic printing proved particularly popular in South Asia both because it was economical and because it enabled multi-script printing. There are now vibrant publishing cultures in the nation states of South Asia, and the essays in this volume cover the whole range from palm-leaf manuscripts to contemporary print culture.

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Part I Writing, Orality and the Manuscript Book: Literary culture and manuscript culture in precolonial India, Sheldon Pollock; Early manuscript illumination, Jeremiah P. Losty; The imperial library of the Great Mogul, Jeremiah P. Losty; The Jain knowledge warehouses: traditional libraries in India, John E. Cort; Orality and literacy/performance and permanence, Christian Lee Novetzke. Part II Technology and Practices: Early books and new literary practices, 1556-1800, Stuart Blackburn; Calcutta: birthplace of the Indian lithographed book, Graham Shaw; The coming of the book in Hindi and Urdu, Ulrike Stark; An Indian success story: the House of Naval Kishore, Ulrike Stark; Readers, reading practices, modes of reading, A.R. Venkatachalapathy. Part III The Cultures of the Book in Colonial India: The Battala book market, Anindita Ghosh; The domain of Konkani, Rochelle Pinto; Reading in the public eye: the circulation of fiction in Indian libraries, c. 1835-1901, Priya Joshi; ’Petrifactions of bygone ages’: the sacred books of the East, Rimi Chatterjee; Journals, publishing, and the literary system, Francesca Orsini. Part IV Post-Colonial Histories: Publishers' perspective, Rita Kothari; Epilogue: exaggerated obituraries?, A.R. Venkatachalapathy; The practices of reading and writing, Laura M. Ahearn; Name index.

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Francesca Orsini is a Reader in the Literatures of North India, SOAS, University of London, UK.


’...this volume offers a good selection of relevant reading materials and a short and handy introduction by the editor.’ Library and Information History