“Identity Confusion.”

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দেবপ্রসাদ বন্দ্যোপাধ্যায়

 Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata

February 21, 2001

Frontier, Vol. 34, No. 17, pp. 6-8, November 18-24, 2001

Abstract: 
The Indian national identity is imagined from the perspective of cricket apart from the other traditional modules like language, race, religion or ethnicity in connection with print and electronic capitalism. Let us concentrate on the language-issue here along with the cricket-module. We are told by the pioneers of Indian Sociolinguists that we were least bothered about our language-identities in imagining nationality until British government decided to run the Indian administration in vernaculars from 1837. Indian linguistic nation states are going to be born from then on and we have seen that Vidarbha, Mumbai and Maharastra; Sourastra, Baroda and Gujarat; Hyderabad and Andhra Pradesh are playing state-level Ranji Trophy Cricket Matches. These teams like Vidarbha, Mumbai, Sourastra, Baroda, Hyderabad have nothing to do with much acclaimed geopolitical boundaries of linguistic states but almost all of them bear the legacy of old royal or princely states, the kings of which were cricket-enthusiasts and all the so called linguistic states in India are always multilingual states as opposed to Euro-centric monolingual states. Peculiarly enough, the so called Sanskrit dramas contained in at least four to five languages. One or two things are to be noted here: (a) there was no communication problem among the characters of the play; (b) there was no communication problem to the consumer of the play; (c) the language-names that indicated place-names, ultimately turned out as names of sociolects.

The immediate question arises that on the basis of which modules the demands of nation states are shaped. The answer is not easy as in different times and spaces different affiliations are formed to give birth to nation states. In Bundelkhand, one man fighting for Bundeli language showed their affiliation with Sanskrit poet Vyasdeva and Hockey-player Dhaynchand. In the Maynaguri-district of W.B., an old propagator of Kamtapuri language showed their affinities with Sanskrit to prove their classical-heritage compared to dominant Bangla. All these demands are of course generating in the local-intellectual (newly emerged civil society consisting of language-managers/-judges/-police) space and not in the sub-altern spaces. Sub-alterns are least bothered about such identities until cricket and mediators can penetrate their essentialist inner domain.

 

Number of Pages in PDF File: 4

Keywords: Electronic Capitalism, Cricket as nation statist module, Lila, game (Wittgenstein)

About Debaprasad Bandyopadhyay

Debaprasad Bandyopdhyay (b. 1965), through his 25 years journey in the realm of institutionalized academics did 27 different types of works, which are someway different from the earlier paradigms or, one might say that those works are not only mere reproductions of his inherited institutionalized cultural capital or a mimicry of a colonially imposed model that leads to intellectual anorexia or rather a type falsification of earlier paradigms. However, that might be not only a lofty claim but it also hid the fact that all our information and knowledge are socially accumulated knowledge that was, it is matter of regret, posed as private property through the sign © and the wisdom is rarely available. Bandyopadhyay’s works and projects are the products of his social milieu. Bandyopadhyay is a local sub-altern public sphere academician, who avoids the technical intelligentsia (followers of Sahib’s models and they are not committed to the persons who are accommodating surplus work-time to them by performing surplus labour) or inorganic intellectuals and thus fails to be a part of academic tribe and its subsequent socialization process. Of course, that socialization process does not lead to legendary Socratic dialogue. He is also a political activist though he has not affiliated to any political parties as he was always talking about the corporatization of political parties within the money-sign-based democratic system. He is a regular participant in TV and radio talk-shows and documentary films, street-corners’ talks and International seminars on socio-political, psychological, linguistic, environmental and economic issues. He also writes editorial columns in newspapers. He is also a part of parallel academics as it is found in West Bengal’s Little Magazine Movement, though that was not counted as the part his academic pursuit by his parent institute. His parent institute justifiably does not believe in the domain of parallel academics as this unorganized sector does not directly contribute in the transactions of formal/organized print capitalist eco-enemy paper-publication. Though the dissemination of knowledge is also observed in this space of these parallel academics as all these writings in public sphere simultaneously influence the classroom-discourse and some of them are translated into English, French and Italian. Not only that, Bandyopadhyay also sought engagement with the people, who, by supplying their surplus labour, are sustaining his livelihood. Bandyopadhyay, a linguist by training and a Ph.D.-holder (1996), a junior lecturer (1999-2011) in an autonomous central government institute in India, tries his best for those from he has received and is receiving the manifestation of surplus labour by executing some self-funded projects on economic issues in West Bengal, India. Recently he has got a consolation promotion to the post of Assistant Professor. He has done following 27 research works: 1. Crippled Creativity: An inquiry into language, psyche, society: 2. VALENCY OF BANGLA VERB AND PROBLEM OF COMPOUND VERBS: 3. Archaeology of Bangla Grammar : 4. CAN COMPUTER SPEAK? 5. FUZZY LOGICAL EXPRESSION IN BANGLA : 6. FOLKLORE AND FOLK-LANGUAGE: MYTH OR REALITY? 7. HISTORICISM IN THE DISCOURSE OF BANGLA LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE 8. ABHABA, ECP, DELETION AND TRACE 9. SVATVA OR MY-NESS AND ECONOMIC ENTITLEMEMT 10. TRANSLATION STUDIES 11. MASCULINITY STUDIES 12. YAYATI & BABAR COMPLEX 13. SOCIO-ECONOMIC SURVEYS IN AGRICULTURE AND INDUSTRY IN WEST BENGAL 14. CONCEPT OF BODY IN INDIAN PHILOSOPHY AND ARCHITECTURE 15. THE CONCEPT OF ERROR (KHYATI) IN MAD-(WO)MEN’S LANGUAGE 16. THE CONCEPT OF PERCEPTUAL TIME AND GRAMMATICAL TIME IN BANGLA 17. BANGLA CALLIGRAPHY, LANGUAGE ART AND LINGUISTIC PEDAGOGY 18. WO(L)D SPACES: NON-EXISTENCE OF WORDS 19. ANEKANTA METHODS 20. SILENCEME: SILENT OTHER IN LINGUISTICS 21. IMAGINED BOUDARIES AND PRE-COLONIAL INDIAN IMAGI-NATION 22. MAKING OF THE INDIAN PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE 23. SEGMENTING THE SUPRASEGMENTALS : MUSICKING IN SPEAKING 24. INTERPRETING GENETIC STRUCTURE BY DEPLOYING LINGUISTIC STRUCTURE 25. GLOTTOPOLITICS OF LINGUISTIC SUBALTERNITY OR AN AGENDA FOR PLANNING FROM BELOW 26. SEMIOTICS OF PHOTOGRAPHY 27. SOCIOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY ACADEMICS
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