First world war and indian nationalism

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first world war and indian nationalism

Indian Nationalism: The Essential Writings by Irfan Habib

How do we define nationalism?
Who is a good nationalist? Do you become anti-national if you criticize the government? These are questions that overwhelm most debates today, but these discussions are not new. And while the loudest voices would have us believe that Indian nationalism is (and has always been) a narrow, parochial, xenophobic one, our finest political leaders, thinkers, scientists and writers have been debating the concept since the early nineteenth century and come to a different conclusion.
Nationalism as we understand it today first came into being more than a hundred years ago. Studied by historians, political scientists and sociologists for its role in world history, it remains one of the strongest driving forces in politics and also the most malleable one. A double-edged sword, it can be a binding force or a deeply divisive instrument used to cause strife around political, cultural, linguistic or, more importantly, religious identities.
In this anthology, historian S. Irfan Habib traces the growth and development of nationalism in India from the late nineteenth century through its various stages: liberal, religion-centric, revolutionary, cosmopolitan, syncretic, eclectic, right liberal…The views of our most important thinkers and leaders—Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, C. Rajajgopalachari, Bhagat Singh, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Sarojini Naidu, B. R. Ambedkar, Rabindranath Tagore, M. N. Roy, Maulana Azad, Jayaprakash Narayan and others—remind us what nationalism should mean and the kind of inclusive, free and humanistic nation that we should continue to build.
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The First World War - Nationalism in India - History - Class 10th - In Hindi - Magnet Brains

The outbreak of the First World War in gave a new lease of life to the nationalist soon resulted in a flurry of political activity among Indian nationalists .
Irfan Habib

Indian nationalism

Centenary celebrations of the First World War have seen renewed interest in the experience of Indian troops. This post forms part of a series on India and World War I. For decades the Indian contribution to the Allied war effort in the First World War has received little interest. In India in particular there is little existing memory that nearly 1. This is slowly changing as the centenary of the war has brought renewed interest in the experience of colonial Indian soldiers, especially amongst the Indian diaspora in Britain. Yet, while the story of Indian troops in battle is one that is generating interest, what is harder to piece together is the impact the war had on India itself.

The First World War had lasting consequences that extended far beyond Europe. The UK has a particular responsibility to construct an inclusive history of the experience of the First World War. It sent staggering numbers of volunteers to fight and die on behalf of the allied forces. Almost 1. However, of these men, around 50, died, 65, were wounded, and 10, were reported missing, while 98 Indian army nurses were killed. While the UK is one of the top ten unprompted associations with the First World War held by Indian survey respondents, India was not mentioned a single time as a top-of-mind association with the First World War among the 1, UK survey respondents. At the same time, around three quarters of respondents in India as well as in the UK felt that their country is still affected by the consequences of the First World War.

The Indian Independence movement was a series of activities with the ultimate aim of ending the British rule in India. The movement spanned total of 90 years — The first nationalistic revolutionary movement emerged from Bengal present day West Bengal and Bangladesh , but they later took root in the newly formed Indian National Congress with prominent moderate leaders seeking only their basic right to appear for Indian Civil Service British India examinations, as well as more rights, economic in nature, for the people of the soil. The early part of the 20th century saw a more radical approach towards political self-rule proposed by leaders such as the Lal, Bal, Pal and Aurobindo Ghosh , V. Chidambaram Pillai.

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Indian nationalism developed as a concept during the Indian independence movement fought against the colonial British Raj. Indian nationalism is an instance of territorial nationalism , inclusive of all its people, despite their diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds. It continues to strongly influence the politics of India and reflects an opposition to the sectarian strands of Hindu nationalism and Muslim nationalism.

Although India was not a theatre of war, World War I produced a major inflexion in a historical trajectory that had been marked since by a certain degree of insulation from the ebb and flow of the rivalries of the great powers. Given the growing scholarly interest in the global aspects of World War I, the role of India in the conflict is receiving closer attention. In spite of the continuous increase in the body of literature devoted to India in World War I, there remain gaps in our understanding of the impact of the conflict on the subcontinent. Since the end of the Franco-British conflict of the late 18 th and early 19 th century in which it had been involved quite directly both as a theatre of war and as a base for British naval expeditions, India had not been embroiled in any large-scale foreign wars outside of its immediate neighbourhood, as in the case of the two Afghan wars of and and the three Burmese wars of , and Only the sepoys native soldiers and their immediate entourage as well as a few military contractors had been involved in these expeditions. As a result, the war was to modify the trajectory of Indian history in a way no event since the Great Revolt of had done.

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