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Cambridge University Press
A History of Bangladesh: Politics, Economic and Civil Society

A History of Bangladesh: Politics, Economic and Civil Society

by Willem van Schendel
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Bangladesh is a new name for an old land whose history is little known to the wider world. A country chiefly famous in the West for media images of poverty, underdevelopment, and natural disasters, Bangladesh did not exist as an independent state until 1971. Willem van Schendel's history reveals the country's vibrant, colourful past and its diverse culture as it navigates the extraordinary twists and turns that have created modern Bangladesh. The story begins with the early geological history of the delta which has decisively shaped Bangladesh society. The narrative then moves chronologically through the era of colonial rule, the partition of Bengal, the war with Pakistan and the birth of Bangladesh as an independent state. In so doing, it reveals the forces that have made Bangladesh what it is today. This is an eloquent introduction to a fascinating country and its resilient and inventive people.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780521679749
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 02/12/2009
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 374
Sales rank: 821,812
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 2.30(d)

About the Author

Willem van Schendel is Professor of Modern Asian History at the University of Amsterdam and Head of the Asia Department of the International Institute of Social History, Amsterdam. His previous publications include Global Blue: Indigo and Espionage in Colonial Bengal (with Pierre-Paul Darrac, 2006) and The Bengal Borderland: Beyond State and Nation in South Asia (2005).

Table of Contents

Introduction; Part I. The Long View: 1. A land of water and silt; 2. Jungle, fields, cities and states; 3. A region of multiple frontiers; 4. The Delta as a crossroads; Part II. Colonial Encounters; 5. From the Mughal Empire to the British Empire; 6. The British impact; 7. A closing agrarian frontier; 8. Colonial conflicts; 9. Towards partition; 10. Partition; Part III. Becoming East Pakistan: 11. The Pakistan experiment; 12. Pakistan falls apart; 13. East Pakistani livelihoods; 14. The roots of aid dependence; 15. A new elite and cultural renewal; Part IV. War and the Birth of Bangladesh: 16. Armed conflict; 17. A state is born; 18. Imagining a new society; Part V. Independent Bangladesh: 19. Creating a political system; 20. Transnational linkages; 21. Bursting at the seams; 22. A national culture?; Conclusion.

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