November 21, 2022


Room 208 Knox Hall, 606 West 122nd Street, between Broadway and Claremont

4:15 pm – 5:45 pm

Event Organizer

South Asia Institute

Event Sponsor

Event Co-Sponsor(s)

Institute for Comparative Literature and Society

Monday, November 21
A talk by Bhangya Bhukya (University of Hyderabad)
“British Colonial Empire and the State Making in the Hills of India”

Time: 4:15pm – 5:45pm
Location:  Room 208 Knox Hall, 606 West 122nd Street, between Broadway and Claremont

Co-sponsored by the Ambedkar Initiative and the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society

Abstract: Is primitivism a consequence of the natural evolution of some human societies? Or is it a conscious choice by such societies to evade state power? In this talk I set out to answer these questions by taking as my focal point the case of the Gond indigenous people of Deccan India. I examines the evolution of Gond society over an extensive period, demonstrating how the British colonial government created an administrative divide between the plains and the hills, thus stereotyping hill and forest communities as isolated, primitive, barbaric and uncivilized in order to deny them self-rule. The talk explores the ways in which the colonial governmentality was introduced in the hills and in turn how the hill people responded to the entire state making process in the hills.

Dr. Bhangya Bhukya is presently Fulbright-Nehru Fellow in the Department of South Asian Studies, University of Pennsylvania. He is Professor of History at University of Hyderabad. He studied at University of Warwick, UK, for his Ph.D, and was British Council Visiting Fellow at SOAS, University of London. His works on Adivasi/indigenous society include Subjugated Nomads. The Lambadas under the Rule of the Nizams (2010) and The Roots of the Periphery. A History of the Gonds of Deccan India (2017). His work on regional history includes History of Modern Telangana (2017) and A Cultural History of Telangana: From the earliest times to 1724 AD (2022). As a public intellectual, he is involved in adivasi and dalit-bahujan movements in India.

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