Recently a friend of mine started a podcast that challenges how we think about South Asia in world history. Typically, I would simply subscribe to a new podcast, listen to it during my commute, and go on with my day. However, this podcast is especially significant to me so I wanted to share it with you.
- It’s inspiring to see successive generations of Indian-Americans branch out from fields traditionally seen as lucrative—business, engineering, medicine, or law—to pursue more creative endeavors.
- The podcast provides a more nuanced narrative of South Asia than most American students internalize through media and K-12 curricula. The first episode, for instance, explores how the British Raj exerted power over Indian “princes” such as Maharaja Gaekwad of Baroda. My family is originally from Baroda, so my parents have shared tidbits about his legacy, but I never learned about the progressive contributions of Indian leaders in school. Discussing a podcast like this when I was in high school would have meant the world to me compared to the tired tropes of India as the land of castes, poverty, and many Gods.
- Kaahani and the Misrepresented podcast make history exciting. While you or I might not agree with every perspective presented in the podcast; the debate about the past is what brings history to life. For example, the first episode discusses why eyewitness accounts, video footage, newspapers, and biographies provided differing narratives of the same Durbar incident. As a student, I wish I had more opportunities to experience history as messy, debatable, and ever changing instead of a collection of names, dates, and events to be memorized. The podcast and Kaahani’s impressive collection of primary and secondary sources can help educators take the former approach to teaching history. The sources will be especially invalabue to world history, human geography, and other social studies teachers.because they cover a wide range of topics in South Asian history and are searchable by time period, theme, and unit of study
When you get a chance, subscribe to the podcast, add it to your playlists, and share it with your friends and family.