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Reading the Global : Troubling Perspectives on Britain''s Empire in Asia

By: Krishnan, Sanjay.
Material type: TextTextSeries: eBooks on Demand.Publisher: New York : Columbia University Press, 2007Description: 1 online resource (255 p.).ISBN: 9780231511742.Subject(s): Abdullah, Munshi, 1796-1854 -- Criticism and interpretation | Asia -- In literature | Capitalism in literature | Conrad, Joseph, 1857-1924 -- Criticism and interpretation | De Quincey, Thomas, 1785-1859 -- Criticism and interpretation | English literature -- History and criticism | Globalization in literature | Great Britain -- Colonies -- Asia -- History -- 19th century | Imperialism in literature | Smith, Adam, 1723-1790 -- Criticism and interpretationGenre/Form: Electronic books.Additional physical formats: Print version:: Reading the Global : Troubling Perspectives on Britain''s Empire in AsiaDDC classification: 820.9/3552 | 820.93552 LOC classification: PR149.G54 K75 2007Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
Contents; Acknowledgments; Introduction: How to Read the Global; 1. Adam Smith and the Claims of Subsistence; 2. Opium Confessions: Narcotic, Commodity, and the Malay Amuk; 3. Native Agent: Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir's Global Perspective; 4. Animality and the Global Subject in Conrad's Lord Jim; Conclusion; Notes; Bibliography; Index
Summary: The global is an instituted perspective, not just an empirical process. Adopted initially by the British in order to make sense of their polyglot territorial empire, the global perspective served to make heterogeneous spaces and nonwhite subjects "legible," and in effect produced the regions it sought merely to describe. The global was the dominant perspective from which the world was produced for representation and control. It also set the terms within which subjectivity and history came to be imagined by colonizers and modern anticolonial nationalists.In this book, Sanjay Krishnan demonstrates how ideas of the global took root in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century descriptions of Southeast Asia. Krishnan turns to the works of Adam Smith, Thomas De Quincey, Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir, and Joseph Conrad, four authors who discuss the Malay Archipelago during the rise and consolidation of the British Empire. These works offer some of the most explicit and sophisticated discussions of the world as a single, interconnected entity, inducting their readers into comprehensive and objective descriptions of the world.The perspective organizing these authors'' conception of the global-the frame or code through which the world came into view-is indebted to the material and discursive possibilities set in motion by European conquest. The global, therefore, is not just a peculiar mode of thematization; it is aligned to a conception of historical development unique to European colonial capitalism. Krishnan troubles this dominant perspective. Drawing on the poststructuralist and postcolonial approaches of Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, and challenging the recent historiography of empire and economic histories of globalization, he elaborates a bold new approach to the humanities in the age of globalization.
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PR149.G54 K75 2007 (Browse shelf) http://uttyler.eblib.com/patron/FullRecord.aspx?p=908561 Available EBL908561

Contents; Acknowledgments; Introduction: How to Read the Global; 1. Adam Smith and the Claims of Subsistence; 2. Opium Confessions: Narcotic, Commodity, and the Malay Amuk; 3. Native Agent: Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir's Global Perspective; 4. Animality and the Global Subject in Conrad's Lord Jim; Conclusion; Notes; Bibliography; Index

The global is an instituted perspective, not just an empirical process. Adopted initially by the British in order to make sense of their polyglot territorial empire, the global perspective served to make heterogeneous spaces and nonwhite subjects "legible," and in effect produced the regions it sought merely to describe. The global was the dominant perspective from which the world was produced for representation and control. It also set the terms within which subjectivity and history came to be imagined by colonizers and modern anticolonial nationalists.In this book, Sanjay Krishnan demonstrates how ideas of the global took root in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century descriptions of Southeast Asia. Krishnan turns to the works of Adam Smith, Thomas De Quincey, Abdullah bin Abdul Kadir, and Joseph Conrad, four authors who discuss the Malay Archipelago during the rise and consolidation of the British Empire. These works offer some of the most explicit and sophisticated discussions of the world as a single, interconnected entity, inducting their readers into comprehensive and objective descriptions of the world.The perspective organizing these authors'' conception of the global-the frame or code through which the world came into view-is indebted to the material and discursive possibilities set in motion by European conquest. The global, therefore, is not just a peculiar mode of thematization; it is aligned to a conception of historical development unique to European colonial capitalism. Krishnan troubles this dominant perspective. Drawing on the poststructuralist and postcolonial approaches of Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, and challenging the recent historiography of empire and economic histories of globalization, he elaborates a bold new approach to the humanities in the age of globalization.

Description based upon print version of record.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Focusing on 18th- and 19th-century representations of the Malay archipelago, Krishnan (Univ. of Pennsylvania) attempts to disrupt the perspective of the global operating in narratives supportive of Britain's imperial endeavors in Asia: Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations, Thomas De Quincey's Confessions of an Opium-Eater, Abdullah's Hikayat Abdullah, and Joseph Conrad's Lord Jim. Acknowledging the disabling problems attending perspectives that enshrine "universal" European values, the author demonstrates how resistant readings of these "global" perspectives can be enabling, creating spaces for new ways of envisioning the global. Krishnan interrogates Smith's precursory modeling of the global through notions of free trade and subsistence and De Quincey's normalization of those models through conceptions of universal exchange, particularly the exchange of opium. He then shifts to a reading of Abdullah's autobiographical negotiation of agency in the colonized archipelago, recognizing in his rhetorical strategies an attempt to (re-)produce global values and gain access to agency. Finally, through an examination of Conrad's representation of native animality, Krishnan interrogates representations of the ethical subjectivity that adhere to Europe's global values. This reviewer is unaware of other work that subjects the representations of the Malay archipelago to comparable historical and cultural readings. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. J. C. Eustace Acadia University

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Sanjay Krishnan is assistant professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania.

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