Tuesday, August 30, 2005

people belonging to the Westernized and urban upper middle-class, heirs of British rule

For nimbleness of wit, plausibility, argumentative
skill, and gift of the gab they are not surpassed
by many people on the face of the earth. But in the
very nature of things they are unqualified to give
a full or fair view of what is taking place in the
country. For one thing, they have their trusteeship
of the people of India, which I took upon as their
exploitation, to justify. This makes them prone to
misrepresent and even to lie. But it would be a
mistake to think that as a class they deceive
intentionally. They are so completely imitative of
the West, so dependent on current literature
written in English, mostly by foreigners, for their
knowledge of their own country, so ignorant about
the original sources of knowledge, and so formed by
their urban upbringing that the whole traditional
and rural India remains outside their ken

(Nirad C. Chaudhuri, Introduction, The Continent of Circe, 1965).


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