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The Performance of Nationalism

India, Pakistan, and the Memory of Partition

The Performance of Nationalism by Jisha Menon
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Imagine the patriotic camaraderie of national day parades. How crucial is performance for the sustenance of the nation? The Performance of Nationalism considers the formation of the Indian and Pakistani nation, in the wake of the most violent chapter of its history: the partition of the subcontinent. In the process, Jisha Menon offers a fresh analysis of nationalism from the perspective of performance. Menon recuperates the manifold valences of 'mimesis' as aesthetic representation, as the constitution of a community of witnesses, and as the mimetic relationality that underlies the encounter between India and Pakistan. The particular performances considered here range from Wagah border ceremonies to the partition theatre of Asghar Wajahat, Kirti Jain, M. K. Raina, and the cinema of Ritwik Ghatak and M. S. Sathyu. By pointing to the tropes of twins, doubles, and doppelgängers that suffuse these performances, this study troubles the idea of two insular, autonomous nation-states of India and Pakistan. In the process, Menon recovers mimetic modes of thinking that unsettle the reified categories of identity politics.
Cambridge University Press; November 2012
272 pages; ISBN 9781139853682
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Title: The Performance of Nationalism
Author: Jisha Menon
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Violence of Partition silenced to circulate non-violent narrative: author Jisha Menon - The American Bazaar
Wed, 12 Jun 2013 21:18:34 -0700
The American BazaarViolence of Partition silenced to circulate non-violent narrative: author Jisha MenonThe American ...