Portrayal of Invaders and Conquerors of Indian Subcontinent: Analysis of History Textbooks Studied in Pakistani Schools

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Ashar Johnson Khokhar


The textbooks are believed to be containing true and authentic historical narratives and it also remained the sole tool employed by a state to impart a certain notion of its identity. The qualitative perspective best suited this research, and within it, the qualitative content analysis method was chosen to analyze the content of textbooks. This study analyzed history textbooks of classes six to eight published by the three state textbook authorities in Pakistan. The focus of the textbook analysis was to identify discourse strategies used to construct, reinforce and strengthen a certain notion of pupils’ identity. The study revealed the use of representation, unification, avoidance, and trivialization strategies as the textbook writers created images of invaders, conquerors and rulers of the Indian subcontinent and the impact on Indian people and society. This study suggests that history textbooks should present history with multiple interpretations using multiple sources to construct a historical narrative.


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