Dealing with Colonial Past

The Image of the British Rule in India in the 21st Century Hindi Cinema


  • Antonina Łuszczykiewicz Jagiellonian University in Kraków



India, Bollywood, Colonization, British Raj


This paper is dedicated to reconstructing the image of the British colonial rule in India in modern Hindi cinema. The main stress in the analysis is laid upon the depiction of the political and cultural impact of the British rule on common Indian people, as well as the colonizers’ attitude towards the independence movement. Consequently, the author intends to enquire, how movies made after 2000 – among which Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India (2001), Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005), Water (2005) and Rang De Basanti (2006) are given special attention – deal with the difficult colonial past from an over 50-year-long perspective. Moreover, the author explains, how modern Hindi cinema shapes Indian viewers’ opinions on the British rule, intending to strengthen their patriotic feelings and national pride.


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Author Biography

Antonina Łuszczykiewicz, Jagiellonian University in Kraków

received her Ph.D. degree in Cultural Studies from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow in 2019. Her research interests focus on the history of China-India relations, as well as on colonial and postcolonial stereotypes and prejudices in the Asian context. Among her publications are two monographs dedicated to the image of Indians and Chinese in British literature. She is currently working on turning her Ph.D. thesis, dedicated to cultural aspects of the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence discourse, into a book.


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How to Cite

Antonina Łuszczykiewicz. 2019. “Dealing With Colonial Past: The Image of the British Rule in India in the 21st Century Hindi Cinema”. Politeja 16 (2(59):123-38.