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HIS 188 — The History of India

Quarter: Spring
Day(s): Mondays
Course Format: On-campus course
Duration: 10 weeks
Date(s): Apr 3—Jun 12
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: Apr 16
Units: 2
Tuition: $435
Instructor(s): C. Ryan Perkins
Status: Closed
Please Note: (No class on May 29)
On-campus course
7:00—8:50 pm
Apr 3—Jun 12
10 weeks
Drop By
Apr 16
2 Units
C. Ryan Perkins
Please Note: (No class on May 29)
The history of India is an exhilarating story of the rise and fall of empires, larger-than-life figures, and vast riches. This course will cover India’s colorful history, giving students a chance to explore the country’s people, religions, and traditions as well as its accomplishments in literature, music, and film. We will begin the course with a quick tour of ancient India up to 1500. From there we will examine the Mughal empire established in 1526 and Muslim rule in India, before focusing on British colonialism (1757–1947) and asking how the small island nation of Britain could establish its rule over most of the subcontinent. We will have an in-class debate dealing with the Mutiny of 1857 where each debater will assume the role of a historical figure. We will also read some of Gandhi’s writings to understand Indian nationalism and encounter provocative short stories dealing with the Partition of 1947, when up to 1 million lives were lost in the largest mass migration of modern history. And we will look at the rise to power of the Hindu-based political party, the BJP. The course will conclude with a class on Bollywood film and a sumptuous Indian feast.

C. Ryan Perkins, South Asian Studies Librarian, Stanford

C. Ryan Perkins has taught at the University of Chicago and Oxford University where he also directed the MPhil program in Modern South Asian Studies. His research articles have appeared in Modern Asian Studies, the Indian Economic and Social History Review, and the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society. He is currently completing his book manuscript, The Islamic Public in British India: Abdul Halim Sharar and the Passion of Print. He received a PhD in South Asian studies from the University of Pennsylvania.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Barbara D. Metcalf and Thomas R. Metcalf, A Concise History of Modern India, 3rd edition (ISBN 978-1107672185)