Book Discussion | Practices of the State: Muslims, Law and Violence in India

june, 2024

07jun4:00 pm5:00 pmBook Discussion | Practices of the State: Muslims, Law and Violence in India

Event Details

The discussion will commence on 7 June 2024 at 4:00 PM IST at the Conference Room, CSPS Office – 60, Pocket-2, Jasola, New Delhi.


Abstract of the book

Practices of the State: Muslims, Law and Violence in India explores the behavioral dimension of the Indian state, particularly its relationship with the Indian Muslim community. The book examines both routine and exceptional practices, highlighting the cumulative and graded idea of marginality. The marginality is reinforced by material and symbolic forms of violence, often endorsed by the public. The book proposes a triadic lens, ‘state-dominant public-margin’, to understand the complex relationship of power between the state and the marginalised.

The book attends to the interface between the state and the ordinary Indian Muslim at multiple sites: the lower caste arzal seeking entitlement as scheduled caste, the Bengali peasant in Assam stigmatized as a foreigner, the Qureshi meat-seller and the Meo cattle-trader brutalized by the gau-Rakshak and the law alike; or those awaiting justice in the aftermath of targeted violence. In each of these cases, Muslimness is produced – not as much through an inner system of beliefs, or the commonality of cultural practices, for they vary immensely – but discursively at the cross-section of interactions between state-community-nation. The book is published by Three Essay Collective and can be obtained from their website.



About the author

Prof. Tanweer Fazal is a professor of sociology at the University of Hyderabad. Prior to it, he taught at the Centre for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, and at the Nelson Mandela Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. His scholarly interests span several critical areas History and theories of nationalism, Minority studies, The study of state practices and collective violence.  Prof. Fazal was a Research Consultant on the Prime Minister’s High Level Committee (Sachar Committee, 2006). His specific focus was on status stratification, particularly related to the castes among the Muslims of India.

He has authored “Nation-state’ and Minority Rights in India: Comparative Perspectives on Muslim and Sikh Identities” (Routledge, 2015) and Editor of “Marginalities and Mobilities among India’s Muslims: Elusive Citizenship” (with S. Jodhka and D. Vaid, Routledge 2023), “The Minority Conundrum: Living in Majoritarian Times” (Penguin, 2020), and “Minority Nationalisms in South Asia” (Routledge 2012).

About the chair

Prof. Maitrayee Chaudhuri has retired from the Centre for the Study of Social Systems (CSSS), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi. Prof Chaudhuri was the Director of the Women’s Studies Programme (2006-2008) and has been an Advisor of the National Council for Education, Research and Training of India. She was a DAAD Visiting Professor at Albert Ludwig University, Freiburg in Germany (2003), and a Visiting Fellow at Harvard University (1995-1996) as well as at the University of Massachusetts (1995-1996). She was invited to lecture at Brown University (USA) (2009, 2011) and at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, in Geneva (2010). She was also invited as an external expert for the Switzerland Doctor School on Gender (2010). She was the expert on Asia for “A Feasibility Study of Women, Intangible Heritage and Development” conducted by UNESCO and the Iranian National Commission for Culture in 2001 and was also the coordinator for the JNU Global Studies MA Program in collaboration with the University of Freiburg, Germany and University of Natal, South Africa.

Her research interests have been on the making of the public discourse in modern India. Her early work focused on nationalism, colonialism, and feminism in India. Since the early 1990s, she has been looking at the changing nature of public discourse in the context of both neoliberalism and the rise of majoritarianism. Her research publications are available at Research Gate




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