This title offers an alternative view of imperial history, exploring the pioneering ways in which South Asians within Britain engaged in radical discourse and political activism. This volume offers an alternative way of conceiving the history of Britain by excavating and exploring the numerous ways in which South Asians in Britain engaged in radical discourse and political activism from 1870 to 1950, before their more permanent migration and settlement. This book focuses on a tumultuous period of resistance against the backdrop of high imperialism under the reign of Victoria in the 1870s, through the turmoil of two World Wars and Partition in 1947. As well as addressing resistances against empire and hierarchies of race, the authors investigate how South Asians in Britain mobilized to campaign for women's suffrage (the Indian princess Sophia Duleep Singh), for example, or for an international socialism (the Communist MP Shapurji Saklatvala), thereby contributing to and complicating notions of freedom, equality and justice.
This volume reframes these pioneers as social and political agents and activists and shows how Britain's contemporary multicultural society is rooted in their mobilization for equality of citizenship.
Sumita Mukherjee is a historian of South Asia and the British Empire. She is a post-doctoral researcher at Oxford University, UK, where she received her doctorate. She is the author of Nationalism, Education and Migrant Identities: The England-Returned (Routledge 2009) Rehana Ahmed is a specialist in contemporary and twentieth century British Asian and South Asian literature and culture. She is currently a post-doctoral researcher at the Open University, UK, and is the editor of the volume Walking a Tightrope: New Writing from Asian Britain (Macmillan 2004)
1. Introduction (Rehana Ahmed and Sumita Mukherjee); 2. 'Horrorism' in the heart of empire: theorising violence as anti-colonial resistance at India House 1905-1909 (Alex Tickell); 3. The Caxton Hall assassination of Michael O'Dwyer (Florian Stadtler); 4. Censorship and the Indian soldiers in Britain during the First World War (Prabhjot Parmar); 5. Littoral struggles, liminal lives - Indian merchant seamen's resistances (Georgie Wemyss); 6. Ghulam Rasul's travels - migration, recolonization and resistance in inter-war Britain (Laura Tabili); 7. Class, cosmopolitanism and narratives of resistance - the Irish League and its East End branch (Rehana Ahmed); 8. Indo-Irish resistances in Britain in the 1920s and 1930s (Kate O'Malley); 9. Herabai Tata and Sophia Duleep Singh - suffragette resistances for India and Britain 1910-1920 (Sumita Mukherjee); 10. Royal relationships as avenues of social resistance - the case of Duleep Singh and Abdul Karim (A. Martin Wainwright); 11. Epilogue (Antoinette Burton).