As an extra Christmas bonus, here’s five key books (in no particular order) on Anglo-Indians and Anglo-Indian history, all highly recommended by the Anglo-Indian Project:
1. The Anglo-Indians, A 500-Year History by S. Muthiah and H. MacLure is an essential resource to understanding the development of the Anglo-Indian community from its ‘birth’ in 1498 to the modern day.
2. Christmas in Calcutta by Robyn Andrews explores the Anglo-Indian community in Calcutta, bringing together life stories, memoir pieces and essays of the community and their contemporary struggles for identity; abandoned by the British, neglected by the Indians.
3. The Jadu House: Travels in Anglo-India by Laura Roychowdhury retells stories of the Anglo-Indians the author meets, to offer a different perspective on the Raj experience.
4. The Concise Hobson-Jobson: An Anglo-Indian Dictionary by Henry Yule and A.C. Burnell was compiled in the late-19th century. It is an essential book for all who are interested in the development of the English language. Bungalow, pyjamas, tiffin, veranda, curry, cheroot, chintz, calico, gingham, mango, junk and catamaran are all words which have crept into the English language from the days of Britain’s colonial rule of the Indian sub-continent and the Malaysian Peninsular. ‘Hobson-Jobson’ (derived from the Islamic cry at the celebration of Muhurram ‘Ya Hasan, ya Hosain’) is shorthand for the assimilation of foreign words to the sound pattern of the adopting language.
5. Essays on Anglo Indian Literature by Sujit Bose provides fine examples of Anglo-Indian literature. The book is reminiscent of the vignettes that were published during the Victorian Period in England.
Cover photo by Anglo-Indian Project