History has been commonly known as the most boring subject in school, thanks to our dull lifeless textbooks and long drawn out lesson styles. Who knew social media would help change that idea with pages that bring history back to life. Here are a few Instagram pages that bring alternate history into the mainstream acknowledgement. Give them a quick go if you want something educational to pop up in your hour long scrolls
So long we have seen beautiful pictures documenting lives, personalities, important historical moments in Western lives from the Caucasian perspective. Poster girls and boys on magazine covers like Times or Life magazines have framed the general perceptions of photogenic and media appeal. This page archives significant historical memory in South Asian history through photographs of people, pamphlets, memorabilia. Gems of pictures as wide in range as soldiers of the British Indian Army during WW1 to Lord Linlithgow, the Viceroy of Indian carried in a Rickshaw in 1939 to citizen archive contributions documenting emigrant life in the USA and UK are preserved here. It is a beautiful showcase of South Asian, brown and black History. Give this digital museum a look.
Queer Brown History
Just like Brown History, this page documents moments of history, historical acts , testaments, letters and photographs significant to the LGBTQ community in India and South East Asia. It has dated documents on the significant incidents in history, mass media, pop culture, literature or politics that has impacted the lives of the queer community in India and the East.
Made in Kashmir
Kashmir is etched in collective historical consciousness as the perpetually conflicted mountainous valley pervaded over by geo-political strife. This page attempts at giving a human face to the impersonalized and dehumanized valley, documenting the lives of its people through hardship and joy and preserving important bits of history significant to Kashmir’s indigenous culture. It is an archive on all things, political, sociological, literary or artistic that concerns the Kashmir valley seen through the lens of the throbbing sentiments of lived experience of its own people.
This page is almost like a digital courier service, a postoffice of hope and beauty. As their bio suggests, this page collects ‘lesser know stories, artworks and ideas from the Indian subcontinent’. You will find rare photographs of Sadat Hasan Manto, Sanaullah Dar or MeerajiMeeraji, news bureau maps of undivided India from pre-Partion times, interesting anecdotes about Indian authors and poets accompanied by snippets of their works and what not. Give them digital curators a visit.
Museum of Material Memory
This is a ‘submission based digital repository of material culture and memory from the Indian subcontinent’. It collects and documents pictures of memorabilia belonging to families from pre-Partition times. Heirlooms passed on for generations, pieces of artwork significant to a loved one, jewellery that belonged to women of the family, five generations back and are still in use, rare muslins and silks that are the traditional possessions of distinct familial legacies, you can submit pictures of anything dear to you. Anything that is old and definitely has a story behind it. And don’t we all have at least one such artifact belonging, dear to us? Soak yourself in stories by visiting this page.
Mughal Empire Archives
This page is a treat for the eyes. It documents all sorts of Mughal antiquities ,paintings, firm and issued by empires, repertoires from long lost armories and all things that scream history. It feels like browsing through archival material digitized and kept in a museum website to go through this page. You surely wouldn’t miss a glimpse of a Mughal turban jewel with a big jaded stone etched in shape of an ornate flower or a clear glass Mughal hookah base or a mango shaped flask with precious stones from the mid 17th century? This page is simply wonderful. No other words for it.
Project Anti-Caste, Love
One of the bravest and most beautiful pages to be found on social media, this page shares wonderful letters documenting stories of intercaste love. This page showcases handwritten letters or postcards that are direct contributions from senders who could wish to keep themselves anonymous or disclose their identities. The page identifies its contents as ‘narratives, dialogues and consultation’ on caste, love and relationships. If you are interested in scouring through a literary archive preserving love and relationships through the beauty of words, this page is definitely worth following.