chapter  2
26 Pages

What if There is No Elephant? Towards a Conception of an Un-sited Field

Hyderabad city and the former Hyderabad State in southern India were my starting points for an exploration of migration and social memory, an exploration that would have led to very different results were it not multi-sited. The 'native state' of Hyderabad experienced dramatic ruptures in the mid-twentieth century that pushed some of its inhabitants abroad, and to not just one but many sites. Hyderabad was India's largest and most important princely state and it tried to stay independent after the partition of British India into India and Pakistan in 1947, but the Indian Army secured its surrender in 1948. By the end of the twentieth century, Hyderabadi migrants were in seven major sites around the world: Pakistan, the UK, Australia, Canada, the USA, Kuwait, and the UAE. Hyderabad was India's largest and most important princely state and it tried to stay independent after the partition of British India into India and Pakistan in 1947.