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- DescriptionSana Haroon examines religious organisation and mobilisation in the North-West Frontier Tribal Areas, a n-administered region on the Indo-Afghan border. The Tribal Areas was defined topographically as a strategic zone of defence for British India, but also determined to be socially distinct and hence left outside the judicial, legislative and social institutions of greater colonial India. Conditions of Tribal Areas automy came to emphasise the role and importance of the mullas operating in the region, and the mullas jealously protected this administrative alienation. Despite its great distance from the centres of political organisation in India and Afghanistan, the frontier occasionally functioned as a military organisation ground for both Indian and Afghan anti-colonial activists until independence and partition of the Indian subcontinent in 1947. Thereafter the Tribal Areas maintained status as an administratively and socially automous region in both the Afghan and Pakistani national imaginations and cartographic descriptions. The regional mullas continued to contribute to armed mobilisations of national importance in Pakistan and in Afghanistan over the next half century, in return for which nationalist actors supported the mullas and their personal interest in regional automy. This was the hinterland of successive, contradictory jihads in support of Pakhtun ethnicism, anti-colonial nationalism, Pakistani territorialism, religious revivalism, Afghan anti-Soviet resistance, and anti-Americanism. Only the claim to automy persisted unchanged and uncompromised, and within that claim the functional role of religious leaders as social moderators and ideological guides was preserved. From outside, patrons recognised and supported that claim, reliant in their own ways on the possibilities the automous Tribal Areas and its mullas afforded.
- Author BiographySana Haroon completed her PhD with the department of South Asian History, at SOAS, in 2004. She held the Past and Present post-doctoral fellowship at the Institute of Historical Research, Senate House, in 2004-5.
- Author(s)Sana Haroon
- PublisherC Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
- Date of Publication21/09/2007
- SubjectRegional History
- Place of PublicationLondon
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintC Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
- Content Notemaps
- Width138 mm
- Height216 mm
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