The Newsletter 57 Summer 2011

The colonial bungalow in India. A postcolonial cultural interpretation towards heritage.

Miki Desai

The roots of the bungalow in India lie in the early attempts of British military engineers in the eighteenth century to design a standardised and permanent dwelling based on indigenous domestic structures for the East India Company when the British were still traders in the subcontinent. In its later version, the archetypal bungalow in the nineteenth century consisted of a low, one-storey, spacious building, internally divided, having a symmetrical layout with a veranda all around, situated in a large compound. This basic model was also adopted with modifications almost everywhere British imperial rule existed at that time.

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