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Siddiq Hasan Khan (1832-90) and the Creation of a Muslim Cosmopolitanism in the 19th century

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The essay highlights the role of one individual, Nawab Siddiq Hasan Khan (1832-90), in writing the cultural and intellectual history of imperialisms. It brings his biography, journeys and intellectual forays together to show how he used the temporal moment of the mid 19th century ‘age of revolts’, and the spatial connectivity offered by British and Ottoman imperialisms and re-configured them to his own particular interests. Locating Siddiq Hasan in the connected histories of the British and Ottoman Empires, it views his in-house cosmopolitanism as a form of public conduct that was shaped by Islamic learning that cultivated urbane civility as Muslim universalist virtuous conduct. This was a form of cosmopolitanism enabled by imperial networks, informed by pre-colonial webs of interaction between India and West Asia, and deeply rooted in the scriptures.


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