Discussion in 'Alternate History Maps and Graphics' started by FesteringSpore, Jul 28, 2018.
"We bring you the world" is so cool
so after about,,, i forgot when i last posted on this thread, i present: the grand campaign and an associate google doc that took way too long to format 'properly'
it's all fun and games until everyone decides to have an uprising
if you have questions about well, anything, i'll try my best to answer them!
An administrative map of OTL German Empire in 1900, was going to add names/labels, but it's already a bit clustered and there are plenty of resources for those to supplement this. As usual, Alternatehistory.com is being a butt so click the image for the 5000x4000 resolution.
Not an error, but a question. The Adrari Sultanate - what's a red wagon expedition?
Still lots of work to do, but I'm pretty sure I've settled on the main continents and landmasses for the world of my fantasy novels.
I see coasts of Brazil and West Africa in there!
Here's the alternate version of South Asia from my Another America timeline:
The colonization of the Indian subcontinent was more diffuse in this continent, with Dravidia (formerly Coromandel) going to the French, and Malabar and Ceylon going to the Dutch, while the British took the former Mughal lands of northern India as they did in OTL, with Hyderabad and Mysore remaining as buffer states between them, while Portugal retains Goa and Denmark retains the Andaman Islands to this day.
As a result the British portion of India doesn't develop a sense of pan-Indian national identity and more regional nationalisms arise among the Bengalis, Assamese, Sikhs, as among northwestern Muslims as in OTL, while a number of princely states such as Kashmir, Junagadh, and Manipur remain independent. Dravidia also develops a strong sense of nationalism and after independence begins a campaign to unite all the Dravidian speaking lands under its banner, invading Ceylon and occupying its Tamil inhabited northeast as well as sponsoring insurgencies among the Hindu majorities of Hyderabad and Mysore against their Muslim monarchies (and in turn becoming a proxy war with Hindustan). Kashmir faces a mirrored situation, with a Muslim majority contending against a Hindu monarchy, while Assam is also afflicted with ethnoreligious conflict as the mostly Christian ethnic minorities along its borders fight for independence from the Hindu center. Meanwhile Bengal, despite being split between Hindus and Muslims, has remained remarkably stable, united by a shared sense of ethnolinguistic identity.
South Asia today is a developing region defined by increasing urbanization and industralization and by significant gaps in wealth and development within and between countries. Hindustan remains the dominant power in terms of politics, economics, and culture, though it is effectively counter-balanced by the three point bloc of Pakistan, Bengal, and Dravidia (who, combined, make up around two-thirds of the population of Hindustan), on the few occasions when they can agree at least. There have been some efforts towards regional integration, although fear of Hindustani hegemony by the other countries and a sense of everyone else being against them on Hindustan's own part have prevented most substantial measures so far.
Pretty nice, and pretty plausible, but I have a hard time seeing the name ‘Pakistan’ used in an alternate world diverging this far back (especially since the ‘stan’ part of what is otherwise an acronym was taken from the back-half of Baluchistan, which isn’t part of Pakistan in your timeline, not to mention that the K is for Kashmir).
There's actually a LOT of actual Earth coastlines in this map, just rotated, or inverted, or flipped, etc.
Yea, I noticed that right after I made that comment.
Well-made map, but the idea is implausible. Indian nationalism is not a byproduct of British administrative divisions. There is a reason it arose from places as far apart as Punjab to Tamil Nadu but not it Burma, even though it was part of British India.
The idea of India is not a mere geographical expression but carries with it a common shared identity. You would have to go far further back in time to have a balkanised India be plausible.
Some of my Indian friends told me that at the time, it was considered highly improbable that India would gain independence as a single entity (or even the 2-4 that it did in otl, depending on how you count it), and that Ghandi was, in A-H terms, a low-probability event.
At the risk of starting an argument (and I don’t mean to be rude) I disagree. A concept of Bharatvarsh existed as a unified civilization (along the lines of ‘Christendom’ in the West), but explicitly not as a unified polity. Regarding political unification for a Hindu civilization as necessary is, at least in our world, an idea which gained a lot more currency through interaction with the West.
But that’s not even the same thing as OTL Indian nationalism. OTL India is and has been a secular state. It includes Sikh, Muslim, and Christian majority areas, and areas which were never linguistically or culturally dominated by Sanskrit or ancient Hinduism. Nationalism for this state wouldn’t have existed without the British and is is distinct (albeit intertwined) from Hindu nationalism.
Now, if what you’re instead claiming is that nationalism was arising collectively in the diverse lands ruled by the Mughals, then that’s an interesting claim but one that doesn’t hold up as plenty of Tamil Nadu as well as all of Assam and the Northeast were never or only briefly held by the Mughals.
In this case it would be like Balkanization if there was no Yugoslavia. Meaning things just fell as they were. The lingua Franca is going to be different in different areas, and without the southern Indians that OTL to pressed to have English as one of the co-national languages (and of course to keep going with each province/state getting to chose their own official languages as well) it would be far too heavy a Bharati Hindi organization.
@Keperry Zomia seems an almost insulting name for Mizoram, as it basically is just what an academian made up to refer to areas without government. And the princely state in Meghalaya would get some independence or autonomy, but looking back at it it seems that it was considered a pretty backwards area by the Brits so they got screwed over. Shame to the matriarchal society there. And for Nagaland. Should I take it the Hindus of Assam and the Bhuddists of Burma work together to crush the various Christian groups upon their borders? Burma did it IOTL, but that was partially just to crush all ethnic minorities. Ahhh, and is Zomia extended into Burma? There is something off about the border. And does Bengal want any of Arakan? And does Assam try to prevent missionaries or Christian groups from getting to Assam or nearby areas? One of those questions was answered as I looked over at your thread. Though given how many Indian Reservatoins you gave in North America that autonomy might be given for other areas of the world. Ahh, I see Nagaland on that map. These from different time periods or just a retcon? Also, you have Askai Chin in a different country than on your first map. Just giving a heads up incase it is a mistake. Probably better here than in Uigerstan though. Depends on roads.
Feel free to ask questions about this.
Third map of my Ancient Middle East series
And the fourth map of my Ancient Middle East series
The concept of Aryavarta/Bharatvarsh is, in my mind, distinct from the 'Idea of India'. To me the modern 'India' arises from the shared experience (mostly oppressive) of foreign rule, beginning with the Ghurids all the way to Aurangzeb and followed by a brief interlude, British colonization.
That's why the modern Indian identity was weaker at the fringes, Tamil Nadu and the Northeast, which had a much shorter experience of being subjected to Islamic rule. It was also the mostly contested and deepest in the Punjab, Bengal and the Hindi heartland. It's a bit of a cliche in AH to have a 'Khalistan', but Punjabis, are often one of the most nationalistic groups you will find.*
In my view, Bharat/Aryavarta is a distinct, yet complementary identity to the 'Indian' identity.
*Despite being 3% of the population, they form close to 15%-20% of the Armed Forces.
Oh cool, I started a whole argument.
To be fair I think that most possible names would probably have "stan" in them regardless of whether it includes Baluchistan since "stan" just means "land", and "Pakistan" means "land of the pure" (which is also what Khalistan means) in addition to the acronym meaning, but yeah I'll admit that I was kind of lazy and couldn't think of a better name. The best I could think of was Gurkani, from the Mughals' name for themselves, but since it's not a Mughal state or successor that felt like it would be even more of a stretch than Pakistan. That or "Islamistan", which just doesn't sound good.
I don’t agree that a unified secular Indian national identity was inevitable or that the level of balkanization I have is implausible. If you look at the splits I have within the area ruled by the British ITTL, it's the Muslim majority northeast, as in OTL, the Sikh majority region of Punjab, which had a significant nationalist/separatist movement in OTL as well, Assam, which has often been geographically and culturally separated from the rest of India as other people in this thread have discussed, Bengal, which is religiously distinct (hence why half of it is separate from India in OTL) and has often had a strong sense of regional identity alongside any pan-Indian identity, and some princely states. I think all of those are plausible splits, and even then an Indian state still exists ITTL, just smaller and more Hindu/Hindi nationalist than OTL. Meanwhile the southern states were never British colonies ITTL so I think it makes sense that they wouldn't unite with the states that were even after independence.
Zomia (I probably should have named it Zogam but ah well) includes both Mizoram and Chin State from OTL Burma and is supposed to be a union of the Zo-speaking peoples like the Chin, Mizo, and Kuki. Meghalaya wasn't a single princely state, it was a whole collection of tribal chiefdoms (the Khasi and Jaintia Hils), and I'm assuming that they wouldn't be able to unite and consolidate enough to resist Assamese domination. Nagaland is retconned away, the world map on my thread is kind of out of date. Aksai Chin is disputed as in OTL so it's liable to show up in different countries on different maps (...yes it's a mistake lol). Also as you can see on that world map Burma is more balkanized than OTL so its own ethnoreligious issues are less of an issue than OTL, Assam is kind of the equivalent of Burma ITTL in being ringed with separatist minority regions with which it's in constant conflict.
Separate names with a comma.