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Ordinary Life in Mughal India: The Evidence from Painting

S P Verma (Author)

The present study illustrates the life of the people at the bottom of the society, frequently overlooked by the historians. The volume, containing no less than ninety illustrations, provides an authentic visual documentation of people's life and their work, and throw light on various aspects of the life of village men and women. It is a unique picturesque volume and brings in the role of the visual arts in historical writings. This book takes as a ground for discussion the representation of sculpture and painting. It includes the work of varied schools, but central to the study is a particular focus on the Imperial Mughal School, impressive for actual representation, vividness in detail and draughtsmanship. These provide more intimate view of material life than we can get anywhere else. Needless to say, it is only the visual records that provide us in detail the ordinary life and culture of the past in its purest form. Dr. Verma meticulously scrutinizes the visuals and carefully interprets various facets of ordinary life, and something of the struggle that Indian people have waged for bare subsistence for so many centuries. We see here stagnation in ordinary people's ways of life, which forms the core of present cultural study. The present volume will interest scholars and students of history and cultural studies of medieval India as also art-historians.

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About the author

S P Verma

Professor S.P. Verma (b.1942) taught at the Department of History, Aligarh Muslim University. He has published extensively on Indian miniatures and British paintings narrating the events of the Revolt of 1857 including Art and Material Culture in the Paintings of Akbar's Court (1978); Mughal Painters and Their Work, A Biographical Survey and Comprehensive Catalogue (1994); Mughal Painter of Flora and Fauna: Ustad Mansur (1999); Painting the Mughal Experience (2005); Eighteen Fifty Seven: Revolt and Contemporary Visuals (2007); and Crossing Cultural Frontiers: Biblical Themes in Mughal Painting (2011) and as editor Flora and Fauna in Mughal Art (1999), and 1857: An Illustrated History (2008). In 1986-87, Dr. Verma worked at the Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. as a Fulbright Fellow, and in 2005-06 at the Aligarh Muslim University as a Senior Fellow in History (ICHR). Dr. Verma, a practicing artist as well, is the recipient of two prestigious awards by the Indian Academy of Fine Arts, Amritsar (1981), and the Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata (1982). Currently, Dr. Verma is an Emeritus Fellow in History (UGC) at Aligarh Muslim University.

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Bibliographic information

Title Ordinary Life in Mughal India: The Evidence from Painting
Author S P Verma
Format Hardcover
Date published: 17.01.2012
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788173054242
length xx+82p., Colour 19; B/w 72 Illustrations; Bibliography; Index; 28cm.