Dr. Md. Sajidul Islam
Department of English
Aligarh Muslim University
The ideology of nationalism has been contested for long by theorists as well as creative writers. Nationalism as an ideology functions on the premise of native land inhabited by native people practicing native culture and religion. Love and commitment to the native land is equated with commitment to the socio-cultural practices of a particular (majority) community. The discourse of multiculturalism emerged as a response to manage cultural diversity in modern nation states. Multiculturalism rejects the notion of cultural hierarchy and deconstructs the concept of national culture accepting all coexisting diverse cultures as equal. In a multicultural nation state cultural identity is not considered as a denomination of national identity. The present paper attempts to read Tagore’s novel Gora in which he problematizes the case of Indian nationalism. Tagore rejects the idea of commitment to conservative Hinduism as a prerequisite to Indian nationalism paving the way for India to be born as a multicultural independent state.
Key Words: multiculturalism; nationalism; performative, pedagogic, national identity