Unarchived Histories: The

Unarchived Histories

The "mad" and the "trifling" in the colonial and postcolonial world, 1st Edition

Edited by Gyanendra Pandey


186 pages | 4 B/W Illus.

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For some time now, scholars have recognized the archive less as a neutral repository of documents of the past, and rather more as a politically interested representation of it, and recognized that the very act of archiving is accompanied by a process of un-archiving. Michel Foucault pointed to "madness" as describing one limit of reason, history and the archive. This book draws attention to another boundary, marked not by exile, but by the ordinary and everyday, yet trivialized or "trifling." It is the status of being exiled within – by prejudices, procedures, activities and interactions so fundamental as to not even be noticed – that marks the unarchived histories investigated in this volume.

Bringing together contributions covering South Asia, North and South America, and North Africa, this innovative analysis presents novel interpretations of unfamiliar sources and insightful reconsiderations of well-known materials that lie at the centre of many current debates on history and the archive.

Table of Contents

1. Unarchived Histories: The "Mad" and the "Trifling" Gyanendra Pandey Part 1: The State and its Record(s) 2. Peasant as Alibi: An Itinerary of the Archive of Colonial Panjab Navyug Gill 3. A Death Without Cause: Mary E. Hutchinson’s Un-archived Life in Certified Death Jae Turner 4. "Standard Deviations": On Archiving the Awkward Classes in Northern Peru David Nugent Part 2: Everyday as Archive 5. Feminine Ecriture, Trace Objects and the Death of Braj Rashmi Dube Bhatnagar 6. Brown Privilege, Black Labor: Uncovering the Significance of Creole Women’s Work Natasha L. McPherson 7. Unfriendly Thresholds: On Queerness, Capitalism and Misanthropy in 19th Century America Colin R. Johnson Part 3: Signs of Wonder 8. Of Kings and Gods: The Archive of Sovereignty in a Princely State Aditya Pratap Deo 9. Geography’s Myth: The Many Origins of Calcutta Debjani Bhattacharyya 10. Un-archiving Algeria: Foucault, Derrida, and Spivak Lynne Huffer

About the Editor

Gyanendra Pandey is Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor, and Director of the Interdisciplinary Workshop in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies, at Emory University, USA. He is the author of Routine Violence: Nations, Fragments, Histories (2006) and A History of Prejudice: Race, Caste and Difference in India and the United States (2013), and editor of Subaltern Citizens and their Histories (2010) and Subalternity and Difference (2011), both published in the Routledge series ‘Intersections’.

About the Series

Intersections: Colonial and Postcolonial Histories

This series is concerned with three kinds of intersections or conversations: first, across cultures and regions, an interaction that postcolonial studies have emphasized in their foregrounding of the multiple sites and multi-directional traffic involved in the making of the modern; second, across time, the conversation between a mutually constitutive past and present that occurs in different times and places; and third, between colonial and postcolonial histories, which as theoretical positions have very different perspectives on the first two ‘intersections’ and the questions of intellectual enquiry and expression implied in them. These three kinds of conversations are critical to the making of any present and any history. Thus the new series provides a forum for extending our understanding of core issues of Human society and its self-representation over the centuries.

While focusing on Asia, the series is open to studies of other parts of the world that are sensitive to cross-cultural, cross-chronological and cross-colonial perspectives. The series invites submissions for single-authored and edited books by young as well as established scholars that challenge the limits of inherited disciplinary, chronological and geographical boundaries, even when they focus on a single, well-recognized territory or period.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Historiography
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies