Revolutionary Pasts

Communist Internationalism in Colonial India


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In this engaging and innovative history of the communist movement in colonial India, Ali Raza reveals the lives, geographies and anti-colonial struggles of Indian revolutionaries, and how they sought to remake the world. Driven by the utopian visions of Communist Internationalism, Indian revolutionaries yearned and struggled for a global upheaval that would overthrow European imperialisms, and radically transform India and the world. In an age marked by political upheavals, intellectual ferment, collapsing empires and global conflicts, Indian revolutionaries stood alongside countless others in the colonized world and beyond in their desire to usher in a future liberated from colonialism and capitalism. Drawing from a wealth of archival materials, Raza demonstrates how Communist Internationalism was a crucial project in the struggle for national liberation, and inaugurates a new approach to the global history of communism and decolonization.


Ali Raza is Associate Professor of History at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). He works on the social, intellectual and anti-colonial history of modern South Asia. He has published widely in leading journals, and is the co-editor of The Internationalist Moment: South Asia, Worlds, and World Views 1917–39 (2014).