Synopses & Reviews
Anne Murphy offers a groundbreaking exploration of the material aspects of Sikh identity, showing how material objects, as well as holy sites, and texts, embody and represent the Sikh community as an evolving historical and social construction.
Widening traditional scholarly emphasis on holy sites and texts alone to include consideration of iconic objects, such as garments and weaponry, Murphy moves further and examines the parallel relationships among sites, texts, and objects. She reveals that objects have played dramatically different roles across regimes-signifers of authority in one, mere possessions in another-and like Sikh texts, which have long been a resource for the construction of Sikh identity, material objects have served as a means of imagining and representing the past.
Murphy's deft and nuanced study of the complex role objects have played and continue to play in Sikh history and memory will be a valuable resource to students and scholars of Sikh history and culture.
About the Author
is Assistant Professor and Chair of Punjabi Language, Literature, and Sikh Studies at the University of British Columbia. She previously taught at The New School in New York City.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 Introduction: The Forms of Sikh Memory
Chapter 2 Sikh Materialities
SECTION 1 The Past in the Sikh Imagination
Chapter 3 Representation of a Community: Literary Sources from the Eighteenth Century
Chapter 4 Into the Nineteenth Century: History and Sovereignty
SECTION 2 Possessing the Past
Chapter 5 A History of Possession
Chapter 6 Colonial Governance and Gurdwara Reform
Chapter 7 Territory and the Definition of Being Sikh
Chapter 8 Conclusion Community, Territory, and the Afterlife of the Object