Schooling Passions: Nation, History, and Language in Contemporary Western India

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Schooling Passions explores an important, yet often overlooked dimension of nationalism-its embodied and emotional components. It does so by focusing on another oft-neglected area, that of elementary education in the modern state. Through an ethnographic study of schools in western India, Veronique Benei examines the idioms through which teachers, students, and parents make meaning of their political world. She articulates how urban middle- and lower-class citizens negotiate the processes of self-making through the minutiae of daily life at school and extracurricular activities, ranging from school trips to competitions and parent gatherings. To document how processes of identity formation are embodied, Benei draws upon cultural repertoires of emotionality. This book shifts the typical focus of attention away from communal violence onto everyday banal nationalism. Paying due attention to the formulation of senses of belonging, this book explores the sensory production and daily manufacture of nationhood and citizenship and how nationalism is nurtured in a nation's youth.