Journal of Indian Philosophy 49 (2):323-359 (2020)

This essay engages with two large themes in order to address the social and intellectual practices of nyāya scholars in early colonial Bengal. First, I examine networks that connected scholars with each other and, to a lesser extent, students and households. Exemplified in historical documents of the period, these networks demonstrate that nyāya scholars were part of larger scholar communities in Bengal and across India during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. I map these networks and examine their relevance for how nyāya scholars were organized in early colonial Bengal. Second, I examine circulation patterns of manuscripts of nyāya texts composed in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Bengal. I argue that a contraction in the distribution of nyāya manuscripts of works written in Bengal during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries took place, especially into southern India. The essay concludes by situating nyāya scholars within the context of colonialism and drawing larger conclusions about nyāya intellectual practices in Bengal during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
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DOI 10.1007/s10781-020-09449-8
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