Extrapolation

Own Maps/Imagined Terrain

The Emergence of Science Fiction in India

Extrapolation (2014), 55, (3), 277–297.

Abstract

The emergence of science fiction (sf) in Bengal in India is situated within the historical boundaries and intersections that mark a certain conjuncture with the arrival and subsequent entrenchment of colonial-Enlightenment science. This paper traces the specific responses to this form of science, and the appearance of sf as a narrative mode embodying a certain kind of ambivalence, that negotiates a space, an imagined territory, within the framework of colonial science. An analysis of a few early sf writings in Bengal, which outline the narrative trajectories evolving in Indian sf, locates this ambivalence.

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Visvanathan, Shiv. Organizing for Science: The Making of an Industrial Laboratory. Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1985. Print. Organizing for Science: The Making of an Industrial Laboratory Google Scholar

Alkon, Paul K. Origins of Futuristic Fiction. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1987. Print. Origins of Futuristic Fiction Google Scholar

Anonymous. "http://www.sf-encyclopedia.com/entry/bengal." 3 Jan. 2014. http://www.sf-encyclopedia.com/ Google Scholar

Attebery, Brian. "Aboriginality in Science Fiction." Science Fiction Studies 32/3 (2005): 385-404. Print. Aboriginality in Science Fiction Science Fiction Studies 32 385 404 Google Scholar

Banerjee, Sumanta. "Calcutta's Battala Books in Nineteenth-Century Bengali Popular Culture." The Popular and the Public: Cultural Debates and Struggles Over Public Space in Modern India, Africa and Europe. Ed. Preben Kaarsholm and Isabel Hofmeyr. Calcutta: Seagull Books, 2009. 159-182. Print. The Popular and the Public: Cultural Debates and Struggles Over Public Space in Modern India, Africa and Europe 159 182 Google Scholar

Bhabha, Homi. "Of Mimicry and Man: The Ambivalence of Colonial Discourse." October 28 (1984): 125-133. Print. Of Mimicry and Man: The Ambivalence of Colonial Discourse October 28 125 133 Google Scholar

Butler, Judith. Frames of War: When is Life Grievable? London and New York: Verso, 2009. Print. Frames of War: When is Life Grievable? Google Scholar

Chatterjee, Partha. The Nation and its Fragments: Colonial and Postcolonial Histories. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1993. Print. The Nation and its Fragments: Colonial and Postcolonial Histories Google Scholar

Chattopadhyay, Bodhisattva. "‘Runaway Cyclone’ by Jagadish Chandra Bose." 2014. http://www.strangehorizons.com/ Google Scholar

Cheyne, Ria. "Created Languages in Science Fiction." Science Fiction Studies 35.3 (2008): 386-403. Print. Created Languages in Science Fiction Science Fiction Studies 35 386 403 Google Scholar

Cohn, Bernard. "The Command of Language and the Language of Command." Subaltern Studies: Writings on South Asian History and Society. Vol 4. Ed. Ranajit Guha. Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1985. 276-329. Print. Subaltern Studies: Writings on South Asian History and Society. Vol 4 276 329 Google Scholar

Dharampal. The Beautiful Tree: Indigenous Indian Education in the Eighteenth Century. New Delhi: Impex, 1983. Print. The Beautiful Tree: Indigenous Indian Education in the Eighteenth Century Google Scholar

Dionne, Russel and Roy Mcleod. "Science and Policy in British India, 1858-1914: Perspectives on a Persistent Belief." Asie du Sud: Traditions et Changements. Paris: Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, 1979. 59-77. Print. Asie du Sud: Traditions et Changements 59 77 Google Scholar

Embree, Ainslie T. Imagining India: Essays on Indian History. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1989. Print. Imagining India: Essays on Indian History Google Scholar

Ferreira, R. H. "Back to the Future: The Expanding Field of Latin American Science Fiction." Hispania 91.2 (2008): 252-262. Print. Back to the Future: The Expanding Field of Latin American Science Fiction Hispania 91.2 252 262 Google Scholar

Gernsback, Hugo. "A new sort of magazine." Amazing Stories 1, no. 1 (1926): 3. retrieved from https://archive.org/stream/AmazingStoriesVolume01Number01#page/n3/mode/2up/search/SCIENTIFICTION Google Scholar

Habib, Irfan S. "Promoting Science and its World-View in the Mid-Nineteenth Century India." Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947. Ed. D. Kumar. Delhi: Anamika Prakashan, 1991. 139-151. Print. Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947 139 151 Google Scholar

Habib, Irfan S. and Druv Raina. "Copernicus, Columbus, Colonialism and the Role of Science in Nineteenth Century India." Social Scientist 164 (1991): 51-66. Print. Copernicus, Columbus, Colonialism and the Role of Science in Nineteenth Century India Social Scientist 164 51 66 Google Scholar

Headrick, Daniel R. The Tentacles of Progress: Technology Transfer in the Age of Imperialism. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. The Tentacles of Progress: Technology Transfer in the Age of Imperialism Google Scholar

Hoagland, Ericka and Reema Sarwal, eds. Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World. Jefferson, NC, and London: McFarland and Company, 2010. Print. Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World Google Scholar

Hopkinson, Nalo and Uppinder Mehan, eds. So Long Been Dreaming. Vancouver, BC: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2004. Print. So Long Been Dreaming Google Scholar

Latour, Bruno. Pandora's Hope: Essays on the Reality of Science Studies. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999. Print. Pandora's Hope: Essays on the Reality of Science Studies Google Scholar

Leggatt, Judith. "Other Worlds, Other Selves: Science Fiction in Salman Rushdie's The Ground Beneath Her Feet." Ariel 33.1 (2002): 105-125. Print. Other Worlds, Other Selves: Science Fiction in Salman Rushdie's The Ground Beneath Her Feet Ariel 33 105 125 Google Scholar

Mahmood, Syed. A History of English Education: Extracts from Parliamentary Papers, Official Reports, Authoritative Despatches, Minutes and Writings of Statesmen, Resolution of the Government etc. Aligarh: MAO College, 1895. Print. A History of English Education: Extracts from Parliamentary Papers, Official Reports, Authoritative Despatches, Minutes and Writings of Statesmen, Resolution of the Government etc Google Scholar

Mehan, Uppinder. "The Domestication of Technology in Indian Science Fiction Short Stories." Foundation 74 (Autumn 1998): 54-66. Print. The Domestication of Technology in Indian Science Fiction Short Stories Foundation 74 54 66 Google Scholar

Mill, James. The History of British India. London: James Madden and Company, 1840. Print. The History of British India Google Scholar

Nanda, Meera. Prophets Facing Backward: Postmodernism, Science, and Hindu Nationalism. Delhi: Permanent Black, 2004. Print. Prophets Facing Backward: Postmodernism, Science, and Hindu Nationalism Google Scholar

Nandy, Ashis. Alternative Sciences: Creativity and Authenticity in Two Indian Scientists. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1995. Print. Alternative Sciences: Creativity and Authenticity in Two Indian Scientists Google Scholar

Palit, Chitrabrata. "Mahendra Lal Sircar, 1833-1904: The Quest for National Science." Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947. Ed. D. Kumar. Delhi: Anamika Prakashan, 1991. 152-160. Print. Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947 152 160 Google Scholar

Pravinchandra, Shital. "Body Markets: The Technologies of Global Capitalism and Manjula Padmanabhan's Harvest." Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World. Ed. Erica Hoagland and Reema Sarwal. Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Company, 2010. 87-98. Print. Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World 87 98 Google Scholar

Raj, Kapil. "Knowledge, Power and Modern Science: The Brahmins Strike Back." Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947. Ed. D. Kumar. Delhi: Anamika Prakashan, 1991. 115-125. Print. Science and Empire: Essays in Indian Context, 1700-1947 115 125 Google Scholar

Reetz, Dietrich. "Enlightenment and Islam: Sayyid Ahmad Khan's Plea to Indian Muslims for Reason." Indian Historical Review 14 (1988): 206-218. Print. Enlightenment and Islam: Sayyid Ahmad Khan's Plea to Indian Muslims for Reason Indian Historical Review 14 206 218 Google Scholar

Richey, J. A., ed. Selections from Educational Records, 1840-1859. Part 2. Calcutta: Government Printing, 1922. Print. Selections from Educational Records, 1840-1859. Part 2 Google Scholar

Roberts, Adam. Science Fiction. London: Routledge, 2000. Print. Science Fiction Google Scholar

Sengupta, Debjani. "Sadhanbabu's Friends: Science Fiction in Bengal from 1882 to 1974." Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World: Essays on Postcolonial Literature and Film. Ed. Ericka Hoagland and Reema Sarwal. Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Company, 2010. 115-126. Print. Science Fiction, Imperialism and the Third World: Essays on Postcolonial Literature and Film 115 126 Google Scholar

Sharpe, H., ed. Selections from Educational Records. Part 1: 1781-1839. Calcutta: Bureau of Education, 1920. Print. Selections from Educational Records. Part 1: 1781-1839 Google Scholar

Shinn, Christopher A. "On Machines and Mosquitoes: Neuroscience, Bodies, and Cyborgs in Amitav Ghosh's ‘The Calcutta Chromosome’." MELUS 33/4 (2008): 145-166. Print. On Machines and Mosquitoes: Neuroscience, Bodies, and Cyborgs in Amitav Ghosh's ‘The Calcutta Chromosome’ MELUS 33 145 166 Google Scholar

Suvin, Darko. Metamorphoses of Science Fiction: On the Poetics and History of a Literary Genre. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1979. Print. Metamorphoses of Science Fiction: On the Poetics and History of a Literary Genre Google Scholar

Visvanathan, Shiv. Organizing for Science: The Making of an Industrial Laboratory. Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1985. Print. Organizing for Science: The Making of an Industrial Laboratory Google Scholar

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Author details

Bhattacharya, Atanu

Hiradhar, Preet

Bhattacharya, Atanu

Hiradhar, Preet