- STAFF PICKS
- GIFTS + GIFT CARDS
- SELL BOOKS
- FIND A STORE
New Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Available for In-store Pickup
in 7 to 12 days
More copies of this ISBN
Other titles in the Princeton Studies in Culture/Power/History series:
The Nation and Its Fragments: Colonial and Postcolonial Histories (Princeton Studies in Culture/Power/History)by Partha Chatterjee
Synopses & Reviews
In this book, the prominent theorist Partha Chatterjee looks at the creative and powerful results of the nationalist imagination in Asia and Africa that are posited not on identity but on difference with the nationalism propagated by the West. Arguing that scholars have been mistaken in equating political nationalism with nationalism as such, he shows how anticolonialist nationalists produced their own domain of sovereignty within colonial society well before beginning their political battle with the imperial power. These nationalists divided their culture into material and spiritual domains, and staked an early claim to the spiritual sphere, represented by religion, caste, women and the family, and peasants. Chatterjee shows how middle-class elites first imagined the nation into being in this spiritual dimension and then readied it for political contest, all the while "normalizing" the aspirations of the various marginal groups that typify the spiritual sphere.
While Chatterjee's specific examples are drawn from Indian sources, with a copious use of Bengali language materials, the book is a contribution to the general theoretical discussion on nationalism and the modern state. Examining the paradoxes involved with creating first a uniquely non-Western nation in the spiritual sphere and then a universalist nation-state in the material sphere, the author finds that the search for a postcolonial modernity is necessarily linked with past struggles against modernity.
What happens with thinkers who operate outside the European philosophical 'pedigree'? Why is European Philosophy 'Philosophy', but African philosophy 'ethnophilosophy'? In Japan, Kojin Karatani, in Cuba, Roberto Fernandez Retamar, or even in the United States people like Cornel West, whose thinking is not entirely in the European continental tradition - what about them? Where do they fit in? Can they think - is what they do also thinking, philosophical, pertinent, perhaps, or is that also suitable for ethnographic examinations?
In this challenging and thought provoking book Dabashi pulls together a unique constellation of historical and theoretical reflections on current affairs to argue that we need to breakdown the ethnographic gaze that is evident with intellectual thinking in the Arab world.
Philosophy claims to be the search for knowledge, unbound by any fetters. Yet even a cursory analysis of how it is conceived when it exists outside the European tradition reveals a troubling bias. While European philosophy, for example is simply known as philosophy,” African philosophy is all too often dubbed ethnophilosophy.” The Western philosophical tradition simply hasnt acknowledged the vast amount of innovative thought that has flourished outside the European philosophical pedigree—and that has led to awkward, and damaging, failures to properly reckon with the ideas of people like Japans Kojin Karatani, Cubas Roberto Fernandez Retamar, or even Americas Cornel West.
In Can Non-Europeans Think?, Hamid Dabashi brings together a unique group of historical and theoretical reflections on current affairs and the role of philosophy to argue that, in order to grapple with the problems of humanity today, we must eliminate the ethnographic gaze that infects philosophy and casts Arab and other non-Western thinkers as subordinates.
"An original and powerful analysis of the emergence of anticolonial nationalism and the postcolonial state. . . . This is not merely a book on nationalism in India with some 'comparative' implications. Instead, it presents the historical case of colonial nationalism to challenge the Eurocentricity of certain basic categories--the nations-state, modernity, and indeed history itself."--Gyan Prakash, Princeton University
Includes bibliographical references (p. -272) and index.
About the Author
Hamid Dabashi is the Hagop Kevorkian Professor of Iranian Studies and Comparative Literature at Columbia University.
Table of Contents
What Our Readers Are Saying
Other books you might like
History and Social Science » Anthropology » General