Language Politics and Public Sphere in North India

Language Politics and Public Sphere in North India

Moving beyond the existing scholarship on language politics in north India which mainly focuses on Hindi–Urdu debates, Language Politics and Public Sphere in North India examines the formation of Maithili movement in the context of expansion of Hindi as the ‘national’ language. It revisits the dynamic hierarchy through which a distinction is produced between ‘major’ and ‘minor’ languages. The movement for recognition of Maithili as an independent language has grown assertive even when the authority of Hindi is resolutely reinforced. The book also examines increasing politicization of the Maithili movement — from Hindi–Maithili ambiguities and antagonisms, to territorial consciousness, and subsequently to separate statehood demand, along with the persistent popular indifference. Mithilesh Jha examines such processes historically, tracing the formation of Maithili movement from mid-nineteenth century until its inclusion into the eighth schedule of the Indian constitution in 2003.


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Publisher Oxford University Press
Release Date
ISBN 0199091722
Pages 368 pages
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