SAIH Seminar: HT21 Wk 3: The Making of "Veer Savarkar": Methods for Writing an Intellectual History

Convener: Zobia Haq

Speaker: Vinayak Chaturvedi (University of California)


This paper examines the conceptualization of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar as “Veer Savarkar” in the early decades of the twentieth century. It argues that Savarkar’s writings about heroism, bravery, and masculinity helped to shape his political subjectivity as “Veer Savarkar.” Savarkar’s engagement with contemporary methodological debates on biography, autobiography, and a history of ideas will also be examined.


Vinayak Chaturvedi is Associate Professor of History at the University of California, Irvine and he is the editor of the Journal of Asian Studies. He received his PhD in History from the University of Cambridge in 2001. He was a British Academy Visiting Fellow at Oxford University and he is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. His publications include Peasant Pasts: History and Memory in Western India (Berkeley: UC Press, 2007), and articles on the subject of historiography, intellectual history, and agrarian social history, focussed on South Asia. His edited volumes include Mapping Subaltern Studies and the Postcolonial (London & New York: Verso, 2000 & 2013) and The Pandemic: Perspectives on Asia (New York: Columbia University Press/Association for Asian Studies, 2020). He is currently finishing an intellectual history of V.D. Savarkar.


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