A Social History of Indian Football covers the period 1850-2004. It considers soccer as a derivative sport, creatively and imaginatively adapted to suit modern Indian socio-cultural needs - designed to fulfil political imperatives and satisfy economic aspirations. The book is concerned with the appropriation, assimilation and subversion of sporting ideals in colonial and post-colonial India for nationalist needs.
The book assesses the role of soccer in colonial Indian life, to delineate the inter-relationship between those who patronised, promoted, played and viewed the game, to analyse the impact of the colonial context on the games evolution and development and shed light on the diverse nature of trysts with the sport across the country. Throughout this book, soccer is the lens that illuminates India's colonial and post-colonial encounter.
This volume was previously published as a special issue of the journal Soccer and Society.