A New Lease On The Utopian Imagination
Abhishek Mishra
Another South Asia! by Devnath Pathak Primus Books, 2018, 323 pp., 1395
April 2018, volume 42, No 4

The book under review, Another South Asia! orbits around a simple but ambiguous premise of what South Asia is. While the answer to this question varies academically, politically and discursively, Dev Nath Pathak, through this book, has tried to provide an alternative conceptualization or imagination of this region. The work is a product of Pathak’s engagement with this question in the South Asian University (SAU), where he teaches sociology and more specifically a product of a seminar sponsored by the Japan Foundation, held at SAU in 2015. Therefore, the thread that binds the contributors is their dissatisfaction with the existing understanding and treatment of this region within the framework of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).

It is in this context that Pathak uses ‘Another’ as a ‘loaded’ metaphor which calls for a shift in the way South Asia is understood within Sociology and International Relations. He accuses these subjects of suffering from various versions of ‘intellectual nationalism’ which, in turn, disables scholars from dealing with this region in more nuanced and comprehensive ways.

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