Hindi Nationalism (tracks for the Times)
This tract looks at the politics of language in India through a study of the history of one language Hindi. It traces the tragic metamorphosis of this language over the last century, from a creative, dynamic, popular language to a dead, Sanskritised, dePersianised language manufactured by a self-serving upper caste North Indian elite, nurturing hegemonic ambitions. From being a symbol of collective imagination it became a signifier of narrow sectarianism and regional chauvinism. The tract shows how this trans- formation of the language was tied up with the politics of communalism and regionalism.
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