ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Two Nations and a Dead Body

The discourse on nationalism has rarely examined the nation-making processes in post-colonial, post-nationalist spaces. Although nation-making in these new states followed the familiar method of "appropriation and application" as in the west, the construction and legitimisation of a separate identity needed an entirely different engagement. This article studies such an endeavour that took place in post-colonial south Asia in the context of the death of a poet. The corpse of the dead poet, Kazi Nazrul Islam, became the contested site by two sovereign nations. The conflict over appropriating Nazrul and his legacy also took place at a crucial political juncture for Bangladesh, as it made the unlikely transition from democracy towards totalitarianism, from secularism to fundamentalism.

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