A Princess's Pilgrimage - A Pilgrimage to Mecca

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In 1870, Begum Nawab Sikandar Begum of Bhopal became the first Muslim woman to publish an account of her pilgrimage to Mecca. Her critical and often surprising description provides unique insight into the factors that went into writing this quintessentially Muslim journey in a colonial environment. At the same time, it documents a process by which notions of the self could be redefined against a Muslim 'other' and the way in which Arabia was constructed by a colonial subject as part of a modernist discourse about 'the Orient'. Reproduced here, 'A Pilgrimage to Mecca' is the original English translation of an unpublished Urdu manuscript by the wife of a British colonial officer. It is accompanied by a critical Introduction and Afterword that make this offering a comprehensive resource on travel writing by South Asian Muslim women, and encourage the reader - whether scholar, student or enthusiast - to rethink established understandings relating to travel writing, colonialism and world history. Reproduced here, ''A Princess's Pilgrimage to Mecca' is the original English translation by the wife of British colonial officer of an unpublished Urdu manuscript. It is accompanied by a critical Introduction and Afterword that make this offering a comprehensive resource on trvael writing by South-Asian Muslim women, and encourage the reader- whether scholar, student or enthusiast - to rethink established understandings relating to travel writing colonialism and world history.

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