Mind and the Medium: Explorations in the Evolution of British Imperial Policy in India


Vina Mazumdar

Paperback    9788188789641


In The Mind and the Medium, Vina Mazumdar revisits the questions crucial to understanding the intellectual history of colonial India.



The author analyses the many dimensions of colonial policy, the intentions and motivations of the men on the ground and in charge, the debates around policy making, the significance of the options involved and choices made, the context of colonialism and anti-colonialism as it impinged on policy making and its reception by different sections of Indians, and the social and political implications of specific imperial policies.


In the process she explores the efforts of Indians to evolve and create ideas and institutions geared to Indian needs and aspirations, providing meticulous documentation of conflict and assertion in the areas of education, gender, culture and political claims.




Foreword by Barun De

  1. Imperial Policy in India, 1905–1910
  2. Education and Social Change: Three Studies on 19th Century Bengal
  3. Politics of Representation: The Role of H. H. Risley

Brief Biographical Notes


Vina Mazumdar (b. 1927) studied at Calcutta University and at Oxford University. She has taught Political Science at the University of Patna and Berhampur University, and has been a fellow at the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla. After a stint with the University Grants Commission secretariat, she, as member – and later Member-Secretary – of the Committee on the Status of Women in India (CSWI), played a key role in drafting the landmark document Towards Equality: Report of the CSWI. She was the founder Director of the Centre for Women’s Development Studies (CWDS) in 1980, New Delhi, a position she held till 1991. Since 2006 she has been a National Research Professor of Social Sciences, Government of India.


She has been a women’s activist and a recorder and chronicler of the Indian Women’s Movement, and has come to be called “the grandmother of women’s studies in South Asia”.

Additional Information

Vina Mazumdar

Published by

Three Essays Collective





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