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Extra resources for A Historical and Theoretical Investigation into 'Communalism'

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Mirrors of Violence: Communities, Riots and Survivors in South Asia (1990) was the first amongst several others to come. ) Competing Nationalisms in South Asia (2002). 36 Those who consider ‘communalism’ as a lack of secular outlook for instance would disagree with Nandy’s formulation of secularism and therefore the contradiction is accountable. 37 Those who would use the concept of majoritarianism for instance face the consequence of conceding ‘minoritarianism’ as well. 35 29 b) Definitions of communalism seem to locate the problem in deeper and deeper realms almost to the point where it becomes inaccessible to definition itself.

Several edited volumes on the subject of violence in Asia suggest that there are common elements between what is called ‘communalism’ India and the riots witnessed in other South Asian countries. ) Mirrors of Violence: Communities, Riots and Survivors in South Asia (1990) was the first amongst several others to come. ) Competing Nationalisms in South Asia (2002). 36 Those who consider ‘communalism’ as a lack of secular outlook for instance would disagree with Nandy’s formulation of secularism and therefore the contradiction is accountable.

McPherson’s stand on ‘communalism’ is one that would be echoed by almost all colonial thinkers after him and had no doubt been expressed by others, without the benefit of the term ‘communalism’, much before him50. The differences which separate Hindu and Muslim are essentially religious. They may be reinforced by historical tradition, by political rivalries, or by economic contrasts, but for the great masses of the population it is the religious issue alone that counts. The Hindu has many gods in his universe; he reverences the Brahmin; he venerates the cow; and he makes joyful music at his festivals.

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