Opening the Hidden Land

State Formation and Construction of Sikkimese History

As Rachna Books enters its 40th year, it gives us great pride to announce our foray into book publishing with Opening the Hidden Land: State Formation and Construction of Sikkimese History, Dr. Saul Mullard’s brilliant exposition on the history of the state.

About the book

In this first monograph on the history of Sikkim, the author challenges traditional Sikkimese historiography to rigorous historical enquiry by comparing it to original seventeenth- and eighteenth-century sources and exposes the contradictions found within traditional narrative traditions. This book highlights not only how and why traditional historiography was developed, but also redefines contemporary knowledge of the history of Sikkimese state formation. The book touches on key themes such as Tibetan understandings of state, kingship and the role of Buddhism in justifying political administration as well as social stratification and the economy of pre-modern Sikkim. This book will undoubtedly prove useful to those working on the development of historical traditions and state entities in Tibet and the Himalaya.

This work is a special edition exclusively for the Sikkimese market published with permission from Brill.

Indian Publication Date: 16 May 2019
ISBN: 9788189602109
Pages: xxxvi, 282
Subjects: Sikkim, History, Darjeeling, Eastern Himalayas, South Asia, Asian Studies, China

about the Author


D.Phil(2009) from the Department of South and Inner Asia, University of Oxford, is currently a Senior Researcher at the Chr. Michelsen Institute in Bergen, Norway. He has authored several publications on the social history of Sikkim, on issues ranging from social regulation, compulsory labour, social stratification including issues of ethnicity and social status, migration and the social transformation of Sikkim from obligation labour to wage labour. His current research interests include social and economic change in South Asia.


Jeewan Theeng Marg, Development Area
Gangtok, Sikkim

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