University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Centre of South Asian Studies Seminars > Connecting Ottoman Hijaz and British India: intellectual networks and legacy of Imdadullah Makki (d. 1899 AD)

Connecting Ottoman Hijaz and British India: intellectual networks and legacy of Imdadullah Makki (d. 1899 AD)

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By focussing on a nineteenth century Sufi, Imdadullah Makki, this paper studies the complex scholarship networks and exchanges that took place between the Hijaz and British India. The early years of Haji Imdadullah were spent in the qasbahs (townships) of Upper-Doab until the Uprising of 1857 forced him to migrate to Mecca, where he spent the rest of his life. From Hijaz, he continued to guide his dispersed disciple community and remained aware of the events in British India. Despite his absence from the subcontinent, he was able to exert a lasting influence on north Indian scholars and Sufi masters. This paper explains how Imdadullah continued to exercise his religious authority from a distance, what his presence in Mecca meant for his Indian disciples, and how his legacy came to be contested by people belonging to different schools of thought.

This talk is part of the Centre of South Asian Studies Seminars series.

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