Indian Literature in English - Lecture Notes - Indian Literature - Prof. DR. C. Reinfandt, Study notes for Indian Literature. Jnana Bharathi Campus of BU

Indian Literature

Description: English literature produced in India by British writers in the days of colonialism) and Indo-English literature on the other, written in English by Indians, before and after Independence. The emerging historical trajectory of colonial and postcolonial writing will then be pitted against standard accounts of English literary history.
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LECTURE 1 PAGE 1
Indian Literature in English: An Introduction
Picking up a long-standing tradition inaugurated in Tübingen by Prof. Gerhard Stilz,
this course of lectures will introduce students to literature written in English in India.
This body of work (‘Indian-English Literature’) can be usefully subdivided into Anglo-
Indian literature on the one hand (i.e., English literature produced in India by British
writers in the days of colonialism) and Indo-English literature on the other, written in
English by Indians, before and after Independence. The emerging historical trajectory
of colonial and postcolonial writing will then be pitted against standard accounts of
English literary history.
Lecture 1: Introduction
1) Starting Points
2) Time Frames
3) The Status of the English Language in India
4) Course Overview
1) Starting Points
- the “Stilz-tradition”
- the Frankfurt Book Fair 2006
- the Pune-connection
India (Encyclopedia Britannica 2002):
-Official name: Bharat (Hindi); Republic of India (English).
-Form of government: multiparty federal republic with two legislative houses
(Council of States, House of the People).
-Chief of state: President.
-Head of government: Prime Minister.
-Capital: New Delhi.
-Official religion: none.
-Monetary unit: 1 Indian rupee (Re, plural Rs) = 100 paise.
INDIAN LITERATURE IN ENGLISH:AN INTRODUCTION PROF. DR. C. REINFANDT
SS 2008 UNIVERSITÄT TÜBINGEN
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LECTURE 1 PAGE 2
Statistics:
-Birth rate per 1,000 population (1998): 26.4 (world avg. 22.1).
-Death rate per 1,000 population (1998): 9.0 (world avg. 8.9).
-Natural increase rate per 1,000 population (1998): 17.4 (world avg. 13.2).
-Total fertility rate (avg. births per childbearing woman; 1999): 3.2.
-Marital status of male (female) population age 6 and over (1992–93): single
48.3% (37.1%); married 47.5% (55.2%); widowed 3.6% (7.2%); divorced or sepa-
rated 0.6% (0.5%).
-Life expectancy at birth (1999): male 61.5 years; female 62.7 years.
-Major causes of death per 100,000 population (1987):
diseases of the circulatory system 227; infectious and parasitic diseases 215; di-
seases of the respiratory system 108; certain conditions originating in the perina-
tal period 108; accidents, homicide, and other violence 102; diseases of the di-
gestive system 48; diseases of the nervous system 43; malignant neoplasms
(cancers) 41; endocrine, metabolic, and nutritional disorders 30; diseases of the
blood and blood-forming organs 25; ill-defined conditions 129.
-Population (2000): 1,014,004,000.
-Density (2000): persons per sq mi 829.6, persons per sq km 320.3.
-Urban-rural (1999): urban 28.1%; rural 71.9%.
-Sex distribution (1995): male 51.66%; female 48.34%.
-Age breakdown (1995): under 15, 35.4%; 15–29, 27.0%; 30–44, 19.2%; 45–59,
11.2%; 60–74, 5.9%; 75 and over, 1.3%.
-Population projection: (2010) 1,168,000,000; (2020) 1,312,000,000.
-Doubling time: 40 years.
-Households (1991): Total households 151,032,898. Average household size
5.6; 1–2 persons 12.1%, 3–5 persons 44.4%, 6–8 persons 30.5%, 9 or more per-
sons 13.0%.
-Average number of rooms per household 2.2; 1 room 40.5%, 2 rooms 30.6%,
3 rooms 13.8%, 4 rooms 7.1%, 5 rooms 3.2%, 6 or more rooms 3.9%, unspeci-
fied number of rooms 0.9%.
-Average number of persons per room 2.6.
-Religious affiliation (1995): Hindu 81.3%, Muslim 12.0%, of which Sunni 9.0%,
Shi'i 3.0%, Christian 2.3%, of which Protestant 1.1%, Roman Catholic 1.0%, Sikh
1.9%, Buddhist 0.8%, Jain 0.4%, Zoroastrian 0.01%, Other 1.3%.
INDIAN LITERATURE IN ENGLISH:AN INTRODUCTION PROF. DR. C. REINFANDT
SS 2008 UNIVERSITÄT TÜBINGEN
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LECTURE 1 PAGE 3
-Major cities 1991 (urban agglomerations 1995):
- Greater Mumbai (Greater Bombay) 9,925,891 (15,093,000)
- Delhi 7,206,704 (9,882,000)
- Kolkata (Calcutta) 4,399,819 (11,673,000)
- Chennai (Madras) 3,841,396 (5,906,000)
- Bangalore 3,302,296 (4,749,000)
- Hyderabad 3,145,939 (5,343,000)
- Ahmadabad 2,954,526 (3,688,000)
- Kanpur 1,879,420 (2,356,000)
- Nagpur 1,624,752 (1,847,000)
- Lucknow 1,619,115 (2,029,000)
- Pune 1,566,651 (2,940,000)
- New Delhi (within Delhi) 301,297.
2) Time Frames
India in World History (Sethia 1996):
one of the oldest strands in the fabric of world civilization e.g. Buddhism, the dis-
covery of zero and numerals (‘Arabic’ numerals), raw materials, market, value-
added goods and services
longevity (3500 years) and diversity: a perplexingly multicultural, multiethnic, multi-
lingual, and multireligious though officially secular state
images of India in the West (“Orientalism”): maharajas and snake charmers, the
sacred cow the land of fabulous wealth vs. the land of abject poverty spitituality,
metaphysical reality, mystical happenings memories of Gandhi and the Raj
INDIAN LITERATURE IN ENGLISH:AN INTRODUCTION PROF. DR. C. REINFANDT
SS 2008 UNIVERSITÄT TÜBINGEN
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LECTURE 1 PAGE 4
Pre-Colonial History (?):
3300-1700 BCE Indus Valley Civilization (Bronze Age)
1500-500 BCE Vedic Period (Indo-Aryan culture, Bronze Age Iron Age)
321-185 BCE Maurya Empire (united subcontinent) fragmentation
...
4th to 6th C CE the “Golden Age of India” with a united northern part of the
continent (Gupta Empire) and a flowering south
7th to 13th C CE the “classical age”
8th C CE arrival of Islam
1206-1526 CE Delhi Sultanate in the North
1526-1858 CE Mughal Empire in the North plus independent kingdoms in
the West and South
Colonial History/Modern History:
1498 Vasco da Gama discovers sea route to India
arrival of the Portuguese (Goa, Daman, Diu, Bombay) as well as
the Dutch (Travancore), the French (Pondicherry, Chandernagore)
and the British
from 1617 increasing influence of East India Company
1757 Battle of Plassey, Robert Clive Governor of Bengal Battle of Buxar,
Company acquires civil rights of administration in Bengal
beginning of the formal rule of the East India Company in India,
gaining control over most of the Indian subcontinent by the 1850s
1857 First War of Indian Independence (‘Indian Mutiny’)
1858 British Rule
1947 Independence/Partition
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