Sorting the Inside from the Outside
the intensity and the scope of their domination depends on how acute is the sense of uncertainty or deprivation caused by the absence of knowledge in an area serviced by a given group of sages, teachers or experts. More importantly still, it depends on the latter’s ability to create or intensify such a sense of uncertainty or deprivation; to produce, in other words, the social indispensability of the kind of knowledge they control.3
KeywordsEurope Posit Blindness Preconceive
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- 1.For a fuller historical exposition of these developments, see Bauman, Legislators and Interpreters: On Modernity, Post-modernity and Intellectuals (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1987).Google Scholar
- 4.Suleri, Rhetoric, pp. 46–8. On the colonial project of information-gathering, see Cohn, ‘Census’, pp. 224–54; and Cohn, Colonialism; Bayly, ‘Knowing’, pp. 3–43; and Thomas Richards, The Imperial Archive: Knowledge and the Fantasy of Empire (London: Verso, 1993).Google Scholar
- 5.The success of that self-representation by the second half of the nineteenth century may be gauged by, for instance, reference to the colonialist figure of Murthwaite in Wilkie Collins’ The Moonstone, who is able to supply the crucial information on the genealogy of the deadly, and elusive, intruders from India into British Metropolitan society, and whose ‘superior knowledge of the Indian character’ is unquestioned. Collins, The Moonstone (Oxford: Oxford University Press, repr. 1998; 1868), p. 318.Google Scholar