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Empires of Light – Vision, Visibility and Power in Colonial India - Manchester Scholarship Online
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Empires of Light: Vision, Visibility and Power in Colonial India

Niharika Dinkar


Beyond its simple valorisation as a symbol of knowledge and progress in post-Enlightenment narratives, light was central to the visual politics and imaginative geographies of empire. Empires of Light describes how imperial designations of ‘cities of light’ and ‘hearts of darkness’ were consonant with the dynamic material culture of light in the nineteenth-century industrialisation of light (in homes, streets, theatres, etc.) and its instrumentalisation through industries of representation. Empires of Light studies the material effects of light as power through the drama of imperial vision and ... More

Keywords: post-Enlightenment narratives, visual politics, empire, light, vision, colonial India, Ravi Varma, technologies of vision

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9781526139634
Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2020 DOI:10.7765/9781526139641


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Niharika Dinkar, author
Boise State University