Minority Nationalisms in South Asia

Edited by Tanweer Fazal as South Asian History and Culture, Issue 3, no. 2, 2012 


Tanweer Fazal : Introduction – Minorities and their nationalism(s): the terms of a discourse in South Asia

Sajal Nag:  Expanding imaginations: theory and praxis of Naga nation making in post colonial India

Rubina Saigol: The multiple self: interfaces between Pashtun nationalism and religious conflict on the frontier

 Nabanipa Bhattacharjee: ‘We are with culture but without geography’: locating Sylheti identity in contemporary India 

Tanweer Fazal:  Minority rights and the nationalist doctrine in India: contestation and coalescence in the public sphere

M. Raisur Rahman:  ‘We can leave neither’: Mohamed Ali, Islam and Nationalism in colonial India

Zarin Ahmad: Contours of Muslim nationalism in Sri Lanka

 Meghna Guhathakurta: Amidst the winds of change: the Hindu minority in Bangladesh

Tariq Rahman: Pakistan’s policies and practices towards the religious minorities


ABSTRACT of article by ZARIN AHMAD: Contours of Muslim nationalism in Sri Lanka”

The problematique of this article is to understand Muslim nationalism in Sri Lanka and how it has grown and expressed itself in the, by and large, opposing dynamics of Sinhala and Tamil nationalisms. It attempts to understand the question of identity of a community which is internally differentiated, scattered across the country without a clearly carved-out homeland or language, and yet had to define an identity. Much of the country’s politics and academics has revolved around the issue of Tamil nationalism, often ignoring and marginalizing other groups and communities who were also linked to the civil war. The case of the Muslims of Sri Lanka is pertinent in this context. Comprising 8% of the country’s population and forming the third largest minority, they were geographically located in the locus of the war, conscious and assertive about their distinct identity, but have remained outside the fore of militant politics.

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