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Description - Warrior Ascetics and Indian Empires by William R. Pinch

Many people assume, largely because of Gandhi's legacy, that Hinduism is a religion of non-violence. William R. Pinch shows just how wrong this assumption is. Using the life of Anupgiri Gosain, a Hindu ascetic who lived at the end of the eighteenth century, he demonstrates that Hindu warrior ascetics were an important component of the South Asian military labor market in the medieval and early modern Indian past, and crucial to the rise of British imperialism. Today, they occupy a prominent place in modern Indian imaginations, ironically as romantic defenders of a Hindu India against foreign invasion, even though they are almost totally absent from Indian history. William R. Pinch's innovative and gloriously composed book sets out to piece together the story of the rise and demise of warrior asceticism in India from the 1500s to the present. It will appeal to students of religion and historians of empire.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521851688
ISBN-10: 0521851688
Format: Hardback
(228mm x 152mm x 17mm)
Pages: 294
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 1-Mar-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - William R. Pinch

William R. Pinch is Associate Professor of History at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. He is the author of Peasants and Monks in British India (1996).

Books By William R. Pinch

Speaking of Peasants by William R. Pinch
Hardback, January 2007