South Asia Institute
South Asia Institute

Professor Cynthia Talbot awarded the 2018 Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize

Tue, January 23, 2018
Professor Cynthia Talbot awarded the 2018 Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize

Professor Cynthia Talbot has won the Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy Book Prize for 2018, awarded by the Asia Council (SAC) of the Association for Asian Studies and  theCoomaraswamy Prize Committee. This award is given in recognition of Dr. Talbot’s achievement as author of The Last Hindu Emperor: Prithviraj Chauhan and the Indian Past 1200-2000, published by Cambridge University Press. The prize includes a cash award and a citation that will be presented at the Awards Ceremony of the AAS annual conference to be held in Washington, DC in March.

The Last Hindu Emperor traces traditions and memories relating to the twelfth-century Indian ruler Prithviraj Chauhan; a Hindu king who was defeated and overthrown during the conquest of Northern India by Muslim armies from Afghanistan. Surveying a wealth of narratives that span more than 800 years, Dr. Talbot explores the reasons why he is remembered, and by whom. In modern times, the Chauhan king has been referred to as 'the last Hindu emperor', because Muslim rule prevailed for centuries following his defeat. Despite being overthrown, however, his name and story have evolved over time into a historical symbol of India's martial valor. The Last Hindu Emperor sheds new light on the enduring importance of heroic histories in Indian culture and the extraordinary ability of historical memory to transform the hero of a clan into the hero of a community, and finally a nation.

Learn more about The Last Hindu Emperor on the History Department's blog, Not Even Past.
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