Afterword
In this book, I have examined how nationalism narrates gendered,
classed, and racialized bodies. I have shown that feminist subjects
are also produced within such narratives, so that the female body,
both disciplined and undisciplined, can become part of the nation. I
have implicitly relied on Homi K. Bhabha's conceptualization of the
"double-time" of nationalist thought: its determination of the people
as both subject and object. Yet rather than note the ambivalence of
national cultures, I have emphasized also their coerciveness, the disci-
plinary imperative of creating the normative that is, of course, op-
posed and conflicted. The differential response to such normative
nationalist subjects by men and women in both England and India,
and the hegemonic formations produced by such processes, has also
been my topic.
The narration of gender as a form of travel and the discourse of
European travel within which such movements of ideas take shape
have been my particular focus. The concept-metaphors of "home"
and "harem" are articulated within such travel that traces its geneal-
ogy to European Romanticism and to class formations within En-
gland. Gender, class, and nation come together to create the home
and harem both as spaces within which people belong to a hetero-
geneous nation or can be normalized within it by comparison to
various racialized and gendered others. Home is the domestic space
that is also a political entity invested with history and tradition repre-
sented through the female bodies located within it. Such a "home" is
a site of resistance by the women living there, who wish to break the
binary of home / outside, private / public on which nationalist culture
grounds itself in India. Resistance is articulated by showing these to
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