The Aftermath of Partition in South Asia

The Aftermath of Partition in South Asia

The Aftermath of Partition in South Asia

The Aftermath of Partition in South Asia

Synopsis

This text draws upon new theoretical insights and fresh bodies of data to historically reappraise partition in the light of its aftermath. It uses a comprehensive approach by viewing South Asia in its totality, rather than in its national terms.

Excerpt

This work has its origins in our years as graduate students at the University of Cambridge when we were both pursuing our individual research which broadly looked at political change experienced by two different regional societies in the penultimate decade of colonial rule in South Asia. While these years did not contribute directly to the writing of this book, they instilled in us a lively interest in the larger subject of decolonization. They familiarized us also with the complexities of debates relating to the prelude to partition, and in some ways prepared us to engage with this theme, although in quite a different way. This work took a more concrete form when we were invited by Professor Anthony Low, who supervised both our doctoral dissertations at Cambridge, to contribute to a Workshop on 'Northern India and Independence' which he organized in 1993. We are greatly indebted to him for this initial stimulus and for providing advice and criticism. We have received his encouragement and generous support unstintingly over the years.

Many institutions have made it possible for us to pursue this work. Financial support for it came in the form of a generous research grant from the National University of Singapore (NUS); a Fellowship at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi; and a senior award of a Research Scientistship by the University Grants Commission in India. The Centre for Advanced Studies at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, NUS, offered an institutional base as well as a congenial atmosphere for research and writing for which we are grateful.

In the course of our research and writing, we have drawn upon the goodwill and cordiality of many individuals.

We would like to express our gratitude to Tong Chee Kiong, Dean, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, NUS, his predecessor, Ernest Chew, and Edwin Lee, Head of History Department, for their support and encouragement in so many ways. Many of our friends and colleagues at NUS have helped with advice, suggestions and kind words of support and to them, in particular, Peter Reeves, Andrew Major, Taj Hashmi, Lily Kong, Teow See Heng, Yong Mun Cheong, Chin Kin Wah, Hank Lim and Brenda Yeoh, we would like to express our heartfelt thanks.

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