Books

Bollywood’s Islamic images

Original_mg237-book-culture-bombay
Book: Islamicate Cultures Of Bombay Cinema
Authors: Ira Bhaskar, Richard Allen
ISBN: 978-81-89487-53-9
Publisher; Tulika
Year: 2009
Pages: xiv + 346 paperback
Price: Rs 995.00
This book explores the Islamicate cultures that richly inform Bombay cinema. These cultures are imagined forms of the past and therefore a contested site of histories and identities. Yet they also form a culturally potent and aesthetically fertile reservoir of images and idioms through which Muslim communities are represented and represent themselves. Islamicate influences inform the language, poetry, music, ideas, and even the characteristic emotional responses elicited by Bombay cinema in general; however, the authors argue that it is in the three genre forms of The Muslim Historical, The Muslim Courtesan Film and The Muslim Social that these cultures are concentrated and distilled into precise iconographic, performative and narrative idioms. Furthermore, the authors argue that it is through these three genres, and their critical re-working by New Wave filmmakers, that social and historical significance is attributed to Muslim cultures for Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

Ira Bhaskar is Associate Professor of Cinema Studies at the School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Richard Allen is Professor and Chair of Cinema Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts, New York University.

The book is available from: LeftWord Books, 12 Rajendra Prasad Road New Delhi 110001 India Phone: (91-11) 2335 6966, 2335 9456 Email: adminleftword@gmail.com Web: www. leftword. com


This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 1-15 December 2009 on page no. 28

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