Friday, 26 May 2017

“The East is a Career”: a centennial appreciation of SOAS. Tuesday 13th June, 6.30-8.30 pm

Another date for your diary!

Burzine Waghmar (SOAS) will give a talk at the Royal Asiatic Society entitled “The East is a Career”: A Centennial Appreciation of SOAS on Tuesday 13th June at 6:30 pm.  All are welcome!

Venue: Royal Asiatic Society, 14 Stephenson Way, London, NW1 2HD

Burzine’s talk will describe the history and growing pains of a very British institution, SOAS University of London, which celebrates its centenary this year.

Burzine writes: “Oriental Studies” initially comprised only the study of the Levant (Syria-Palestine and Egypt), but later came to include lands further to the east. The contributions of this discipline to public life nationally and to scholarship internationally have often been misunderstood during the last quarter of the 20th century.

Do join Burzine and help celebrate the SOAS centenary!

96th SAALG Conference,Oxford, Friday 21 July 2017

Dear SAALG members,

We warmly invite you to the 2017 SAALG conference taking place on Friday the 21st July at the recently renovated Weston Library at Oxford (formerly the New Bodleian):

The 96th conference will centre around the theme of ephemera with papers including treasures from the Queen Mary Indian collection, Cambridge University Library - archival material includes personal scrapbooks and souvenirs.  Further talks will discuss ephemera and the Empire: a tour through the British colonies and foreign possessions, and ephemera relating to the firework industry in Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu.

The conference fee, due on the day, will be £30.

Please confirm your attendance by emailing me on: by Wednesday 12th July, letting me know if you have any special dietary requirements.

Unfortunately any cancellations after that date will incur a catering charge, for which we will have to invoice you.

The SAALG Steering Committee look forward to seeing you there!

Best wishes,

Farzana ( SAALG Secretary)

Monday, 8 May 2017

Curries and bugles

Domestic life and natural history.

One of the greatest pleasures in cataloguing the donations made to the Centre of South Asian Studies at the University of Cambridge is coming across books which reflect daily routines or general interests, often annotated.  They come from personal libraries and help to supplement the archive material deposited in the form of recorded interviews, papers and photographs.

Household management
Special diets
Simple menus and recipes for camp, home and nursery by Lucy Carne. Calcutta: Thacker, Spink and Co., 1902, donated by Miss H.M. Alpin Archive ALP 8 which was referred to in the first blog has a section of foods for children. Very soft and plain food seemed to be in order.
Simple menus and recipes for camp, Archive ALP 8
Archive Misc 87 Curries and bugles
Some books look back with fondness to life in India such as a recipe for Chapattis with butter and marmalade taken from Curries and bugles : a memoir and cookbook of the British Raj written and illustrated by Jennifer Brennan. London : Viking, 1990.  Archive Misc 87. 

Complete Indian Housekeeper and cook.
Archive DV 2, donated by Mrs K.M. Davies.

Nineteenth century advice on clothing:

"Whilst on the subject of stockings, a word of warning may be given on open-work decoration : mosquitos are very prevalent in most parts of India, and the bite of a mosquito may mean death. At least four pairs of stays should be taken, as in hot weather they get sodden and require drying and airing"  from The complete Indian housekeeper and cook : giving the duties of mistress and servants, the general management of the house, and practical recipes for cooking in all its branches by F.A. Steel and G. Gardiner. London : William Heinemann, 1907. Archive DV 2, donated by Mrs K.M. Davies. This was originally published in 1888 and a 1921 edition is shelved at Archive (54):64. A 2010 reprint is available from Cambridge core. From the same book: the list of clothing required for a station in the plains where there is society is copied above.

Interests of a Brigadier
Brigadier F.R.L. Goadby (1899-1985) donated in May 1981 over 70 books covering his wide ranging interests in dance, art, architecture, Indian fauna and flora, and army life. Notes inside some of the books show that he carried out botanical research on behalf of friends. He served in the Royal Engineers from 1918 and the Royal Corps of Signals from 1921. In 1926 he joined the Indian Army serving in the 2/3rd Sikh Pioneers. During 1933 he transferred to the 1st Battalion, 6th Rajputana Rifles (which uses a bugle horn as its insignia). Later in his career he served in Southern Command, India; Simla; Calcutta; Bihar; and Bombay.

The State Library of Victoria has digitized Myauk. The Indian Army ABC (Archive GB 30) which provides a light hearted view of conditions a decade before Goadby joined the Sikh Pioneers.

Botanical guides
During his various postings Goadby studied local flora and built up a collection of botanical guides which  include three volumes of B.O. Coventry, Wild flowers of Kashmir,  London : Raithby, Lawrence & Co. 1923-1930 (Archive GB 2a-c), H. Collett, Flora simlensis : a handbook of the flowering plants of Simla and the neighbourhood, Calcutta : Thacker. 1902 (Archive GB 26), and P.F. Fyson,  Flora of the South Indian Hill stations, Madras : printed by the superintendent, 1932 (Archive GB 25 a&b). Being a private collection means that the books donated have papers and other items included, a problem for archivists and librarians. Charles James Bamber, Plants of the Punjab : a descriptive key to the flora of the Punjab, Lahore : Superintendent Government Printing,  1916 (Archive GB 27) has many pressed plants included.  Should they be sent to a Botany department?

Bamber, Plants of the Punjab. Archive GB 27