Member Publications

Anglophone Indian Women Writers, 1870-1920

By Ellen Brinks

Ellen Brinks examines the Anglophone literary works of Toru Dutt, Krupabai Satthianadhan, Pandita Ramabai, Cornelia Sorabji, and Saroini Naidu, women deeply rooted in and connected to both South Asian and British cultures who found large audiences in the West and in India in their public roles as writers, reformers, activists, and cultural translators. The received narrative that British imperialism in India was perpetuated with little or no cultural contact between the colonizers and the colonized population is complicated by all five women's professional and personal lives.

Brinks’s close readings of these texts suggest new ways of reading a range of issues central to nineteenth-century transnational and postcolonial studies: the relationship of colonized women to the metropolitan (literary) culture; Indian and English women’s separate and joint engagements in reformist and nationalist struggles; the “translatability” of culture; the articulation strategies and complex negotiations of self-identification of Anglophone Indian women writers; and the significance and place of cultural difference. Informed by extensive archival research, Brinks’s close readings of their works suggest new ways of understanding late nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century English-language literary history, women's history, and the history of empire.

Available through Ashgate

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