ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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The 'Composite' State and Its 'Nation': Karnataka's Reunification Revisited

Has the idea of the linguistic state been rendered increasingly irrelevant or less pertinent in the current stage of capitalist development? The unfolding political scenario in Karnataka calls for a return to its founding moments as a linguistic state. In the early 1950s, Kengal Hanumanthaiah developed the idea of a "composite state" partly in order to channelise the discontent within Mysore about the possible loss of (caste) power but equally to provide an alternative matrix (that of development) within the expanded state. What were the roots of that alternative to the (linguistic) state that was being imagined, and have the recent political developments been a realisation of that imagined "composite state" or its demise? This article attempts to frame these questions through a return to the legislative assembly debates of the early 1950s.

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