Space, Sociality, and Sources of Pleasure: A Response to Sanjay Subrahmanyam

Kia, Mana

This response essay engages with the themes of space, sociality, and sources (of pleasure and of scholarship) in Sanjay Subrahmanyam’s article in this issue, “The Hidden Face of Surat.” I reflect on how the Persianate adab that was a dominant cultural form in this port city might cause us to mitigate our analytical concepts when approaching phenomena from different historical contexts. I propose historical inquiry as a form of translation, to look for ways of understanding difference and engaging across it that may or may not be the same as European cosmopolitanism.


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Also Published In

Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient

More About This Work

Academic Units
Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies
Published Here
December 22, 2020


Keywords: Persianate – cosmopolitanism – difference – translation – adab – Indian Ocean