Between 1846 and 1947, the British colonial state in India forged a region out of the western Karakoram Mountains, which it labeled in 1889 as the Gilgit Agency. Through an analysis of maps, colonial representations, local writings, and oral histories, this article critically examines the importance of routes, the politics of linkages, and the structuring of circulation in producing a regional space and transforming it over time. This article argues that space is constituted through access and patterns of circulation as well as the cartographic project defining borders. The structuring of mobility along particular routes and the emerging state mechanisms to construct and maintain access produced a region and continuously transformed it, integrating the region and the people into the British colonial state.
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