Issue 10

Doon School Images

David MacDougall

These pictures were made at a boarding school in northern India between 1997 and 20001. They come from a research project in which I used video extensively to record the students’ activities and their experience of living in a particular social and sensory environment. Doon School is the most famous boys’ boarding school in India and was the first school to be established for Indian students on the model of the British «public school». It aims to promote equality, leadership, a scientific outlook, and a concept of masculinity partly derived from India’s colonial past. The school is also a place of contradictions, where egalitarian ideals coexist with hierarchy and privilege. The school has been influential in the creation of the new Indian elites, and epitomizes many aspects of Indian postcoloniality.