For the Record: An Educational Memoir in Late Colonial India
Keywords:Empire, memoir, self writing, education, Mary Bhore
For the Record: An Educational Memoir in Late Colonial India
Mary Bhore’s Some Impressions of England (Bhore 1900) forms a record of her travel to England and the basis of her argument for women’s education in India. While Bhore does not openly criticise the empire, her account of her experiences as well as her very presence in England invert the logic of imperial relations by turning the colonial subject into the ethnographic observer. Her memoir is not unlike the writing of the “England-returned” men and women in late-colonial India, but it shows a curious absence of the personal. Drawing on Foucault’s “Self Writing”, I will argue that Bhore’s text is as much “a narrative of the self” as it is about a shaping of the other; in other words, it is an attempt to turn her own experience into a kind of guide for her readers.
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