This examination of the formally autonomous state of Hyderabad in a global comparative framework challenges the idea of the dominant British Raj as the sole sovereign power in the late colonial period. Beverley argues that Hyderabad's position as a subordinate yet sovereign 'minor state' was not just a legal formality, but that in exercising the right to internal self-government and acting as a conduit for the regeneration of transnational Muslim intellectual and political networks, Hyderabad was indicative of the fragmentation of sovereignty between multiple political entities amidst Empires. By exploring connections with the Muslim world beyond South Asia, law and policy administration along frontiers with the colonial state and urban planning in expanding Hyderabad City, Beverley presents Hyderabad as a locus for experimentation in global and regional forms of political modernity. This book recasts the political geography of late imperialism and historicises Muslim political modernity in South Asia and beyond.
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Introduction: fragmenting sovereignty; 1. Minor sovereignties: Hyderabad among states and empires; 2. The legal framework of sovereignty; Part I. Ideas: 3. A passage to another India: Hyderabad's discursive universe; 4. Hyderabad and the world: bureaucrat-intellectuals and Muslim modernist internationalism; Part II. Institutions: 5. Moglai temporality: institutions, imperialism and the making of the Hyderabad frontier; 6. Frontier as resource: law, crime and sovereignty on the margins of empire; Part III. Urban Space: 7. Remaking city, developing state: ethical patrimonialism, urbanism and economic planning; 8. Improvising urbanism: sanitation and power in Hyderabad and Secunderabad; Conclusion: fragmented sovereignty in a world of nation-states.
'Hyderabad formed the strongest Muslim link between colonial India and the world. By taking seriously its claims to sovereignty, Beverley carries Hyderabad beyond its colonial confines onto the larger stage of transnational history.' Nile Green, University of California, Los Angeles 'Hyderabad was a seat of political experimentation and sub-imperial power that was both communal and cosmopolitan. More than a princely state, as Eric Lewis Beverley shows, it is an exemplar of alternative forms of territorialized sovereignty in British India and beyond.' Antoinette Burton, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
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