Barun De

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This article is about the historian. For the pathologist, see Barun K. De.
Barun De
Born 30 October 1932
Calcutta, India
Died 16 July 2013 (aged 80)
Fields History
Alma mater

Barun De (30 October 1932 – 16 July 2013) was an Indian historian. He served as founder-director of the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta and the Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Kolkata and as the honorary state editor for the West Bengal District Gazetteers. He was chairman of the West Bengal Heritage Commission.

Education[edit]

De studied at St. Xavier's Collegiate School, Calcutta. He completed his higher studies at Presidency College, Calcutta and later at St. Catherine's College, Oxford and Nuffield College, Oxford, where he completed a D.Phil. thesis.[1]

Career[edit]

De held various positions at various times, including a senior professorship at the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta,[2] the founder-directorship of the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta and the Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies,[1] a membership of the Indian Council of Historical Research, New Delhi, and the role of honorary state editor of the West Bengal District Gazetteers.[3] He taught abroad at Duke University and elsewhere,[4] and held a senior fellowship of the Indian Institute of Advanced Studies, Shimla.[5]

Among his roles after retirement in 2004 were membership of the controversial NCERT textbook review committee.[6] He was a vice president of the Asiatic Society of Bengal.[7] He was chairman of the West Bengal State Archives, Calcutta.[4] He became a member of the Board of Trustees of the Indian Museum, Calcutta,[7] and a member of the Heritage Conservation Committee of the Kolkata Municipal Corporation, in which capacity he was among several people who prepared a list of heritage buildings of West Bengal.[8] The Times of India described him as "a pioneer of the heritage movement of West Bengal",[2] and he was honorary chairman of the West Bengal Heritage Commission.[4] He was also a Tagore National Fellow at the Victoria Memorial Hall, Calcutta.[9]

Research[edit]

De's research spanned from early- to late-modern periods of Indian history. In the earlier part of his career he wrote on Henry Dundas and the conquest of India, while later on he addressed the Marxist critique of the colonial context of the Bengal renaissance.[10] He was also concerned with the national movement: his popular textbook book, Freedom Struggle, co-authored with Bipan Chandra and Amalesh Tripathi,[1] was censored by the new Central government that came to power in India in 1977.[11] It has been translated into Bengali.[12]

Death[edit]

Barun De died on 16 July 2013 following renal complications two months after he underwent surgery for brain tumor.[2][13]

Personal[edit]

De's family were Brahmos.[2] His father, Basanta Kumar De, was a high ranking officer of the Bengal Nagpur Railway,[7] and his grandfather was the orientalist Brajendranath De.[3]

Posthumous[edit]

The Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Calcutta has instituted a Barun De Memorial Lecture.[14]

Publications[edit]

Books[edit]

  • Secularism at Bay: Uzbekistan at the Turn of the Century (New Delhi, 2006)[15]
  • (ed.) State, Development and Political Culture: Bangladesh and India, (New Delhi, 1997) (Co-edited with Ranabir Samaddar)
  • (ed.) Mukti Sangrame Banglar Chatra-Samaj (Students of Bengal in the Struggle of Liberation) (in Bengali), (Calcutta: Paschim Banga Itihas Samsad, 1992)
  • (ed.) West Bengal District Gazetteers, 24 Parganas, (Calcutta, 1983)
  • (ed.) West Bengal District Gazetteers, Darjeeling, (Calcutta, 198?)
  • (ed.) Perspectives in Social Sciences, 1: Historical Dimensions (New Delhi, 1977)[16]
  • (ed.) Proceedings of the Indian History Congress, (Calcutta: Jadavpur Session, 1974)
  • (ed.) Proceedings of the Indian History Congress, (Aligarh: Aligarh Session, 1975)
  • (et al. eds.) Essays in Honour of Professor Sushobhan Chandra Sarkar (New Delhi, 1975)[17]
  • Freedom Struggle (New Delhi, 1972), (Co-authored with Bipan Chandra and Amalesh Tripathi)[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Mukherjee], Rudrangshu (18 July 2013). "Clio's Disciple". Retrieved 2015-02-24. 
  2. ^ a b c d "The Times of India" - Staff Reporter Retrieved 2015-02-27.
  3. ^ a b "Professor Barun De (1932-2013)" - Sabyasachi Bhattacharya Indian Historical Review. Retrieved 2015-03-15.
  4. ^ a b c "Historian Barun De dies at 80" - Business Standard Retrieved 2015-03-06.
  5. ^ "Historian Barun De dead" - The Statesman, 18 July 2013 Retrieved 2015-03-05.
  6. ^ India Today, 2004
  7. ^ a b c "Historian and Administrator" - Aniruddha Ray Retrieved 2015-03-03
  8. ^ "Heritage Conservation Committee" p. 3. Retrieved 2015-03-23
  9. ^ "Obituary" in the Victoria Memorial Newsletter - Sabyasachi Bhattacharya Retrieved 2015-0317.
  10. ^ "A Conversationalist Intellectual - Sugata Bose" Retrieved 2015-03-27.
  11. ^ "Censorship of Historical Thought: A World Guide" - Antoon de Baets Retrieved 2015-02-21.
  12. ^ "Historian Barun De passes away - Panchanan Chattopadhyay". Mainstreamweekly. Retrieved 2015-03-23.
  13. ^ "Historian Barun De passes away". Hindustan Times. 18 July 2013. Retrieved 4 October 2013. 
  14. ^ Barun De Memorial Lecture Retrieved 2015-02-27.
  15. ^ "Secularism at Bay: Uzbekistan at the Turn of the Century" - Barun De Retrieved 2015-02-17
  16. ^ David L.Curley (reviewer), Perspectives in Social Sciences I: Historical Dimension, in The Journal of Asian Studies, Vol. 40, No. 1, (Nov. 1980), pp. 158–60
  17. ^ "Peasant Labour and Colonial Capital: Rural Bengal since 1770" - Sugata Bose 2015-02-19.
  18. ^ "Freedom Struggle" - Bipan Chandra, Amalesh Tripathi and Barun De Retrieved 2015-02-18.

External links[edit]