A Socio-Cultural Analysis
M. Raisur Rahman
PUNJAB RECONSIDERED: HISTORY, CULTURE, AND PRACTICE by Anshu Malhotra and Farina Mir Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2014, 461 pp., 695
January 2014, volume 38, No 1

As a primordial form of identity, people in the Indian subcontinent possess a remarkable affinity to the place where they come from. Different regions have their own sense of linguistic, literary and cultural dynamics that bind people together while also distinguishing them from those inhabiting other regions. The region of Punjab is no exception. Rather, it is unique and unusual in certain ways. Despite its shifting administrative boundaries during the course of its history and severance between India and Pakistan post-1947, the overall culture of Punjab continues to evoke commonness, attachment, and a shared ground among those related to the region—regardless of differences along myriad lines, including religious, social, political and even historical. It is this notion of ‘Punjabiyat’ or ‘Punjabiness’ that the edited volume under review seeks to address through fifteen different essays written by a host of Punjab experts.The contributors to the volume include C. S. Adcock, Alyssa Ayres, Tony Ballantyne, Anna Bigelow, Markus Daechsel, Louis E. Fenech, David Gilmartin, William J. Glover, Gurinder Singh Mann, Anne Murphy, Harjot Oberoi, Simona Sawhney, Christopher Shackle and the editors themselves have contributed a chapter each.

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