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Ranis and the Raj

Ranis and the Raj

The Pen and the Sword

Queeny Pradhan
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Traditionally, history has been telling us the stories of kings. In the long tradition of history writing, his-story has always dominated over her-story. Though queens evoke a sense of romance and their stories are told like fairy tales, it is common enough to find that these stories end in tragedy. In India’s history, not all queens are remembered today. Some are celebrated; while others have been almost ignored by historians.

In Ranis and the Raj, Queeny Pradhan has selected six queens. All the six queens are fromthe nineteenth century and have faced the British Raj, the East India Company and the Crown. From the Rani of Sirmur, who was the earliest to deal with theBritish authorities, to Rani Chennamma, Rani Jindan, Begum Zeenat Mahal, Rani Lakshmi Bai, to the Sikkim Queen from the 1860s to 1890s, Pradhan has attempted to carve an engrossing historical narrative for each of these important figures in Indian history. Unlike the biographical convention in traditional history writing, theresearch in this book can be placed in the realm of ‘microhistory’. The life stories of these queens are fragmented due to the ‘silences’ and ‘invisibilization’ in political history of the time, and this book aims to fill these gaps.

Imprint: India Viking

Published: Sep/2022

ISBN: 9780670091034

Length : 304 Pages

MRP : ₹599.00

Ranis and the Raj

The Pen and the Sword

Queeny Pradhan

Traditionally, history has been telling us the stories of kings. In the long tradition of history writing, his-story has always dominated over her-story. Though queens evoke a sense of romance and their stories are told like fairy tales, it is common enough to find that these stories end in tragedy. In India’s history, not all queens are remembered today. Some are celebrated; while others have been almost ignored by historians.

In Ranis and the Raj, Queeny Pradhan has selected six queens. All the six queens are fromthe nineteenth century and have faced the British Raj, the East India Company and the Crown. From the Rani of Sirmur, who was the earliest to deal with theBritish authorities, to Rani Chennamma, Rani Jindan, Begum Zeenat Mahal, Rani Lakshmi Bai, to the Sikkim Queen from the 1860s to 1890s, Pradhan has attempted to carve an engrossing historical narrative for each of these important figures in Indian history. Unlike the biographical convention in traditional history writing, theresearch in this book can be placed in the realm of ‘microhistory’. The life stories of these queens are fragmented due to the ‘silences’ and ‘invisibilization’ in political history of the time, and this book aims to fill these gaps.

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Queeny Pradhan

An alumnus of Centre for Historical Studies, JNU, New Delhi, Queeny Pradhan is a professor of History at GGS Indraprastha University, New Delhi. She teaches Indian History, Legal History, and Women in History. She was awarded the doctoral scholarship from Teen Murti Memorial Fund. She was a postdoctoral fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla. She was also an ICCR Visiting Professor at the University of Vienna. She has authored a book, Empire in the Hills: Simla, Darjeeling, Ootacamund and Mount Abu, 1820-1920, OUP in 2017. She has also co-edited a volume, Identities in South Asia: Conflicts and Assertions, Routledge, 2019. Presently, she is the Dean of the University School of Mass Communication, GGSIP University.