The Argumentative Indian
Writings on Indian History, Culture and Identity
- 9,49 €
- 9,49 €
India is a very diverse country with many distinct pursuits, vastly different convictions, widely divergent customs, and a veritable feast of viewpoints. The Argumentative Indian brings together an illuminating selection of writings from Nobel prize-winning economist Amartya Sen that outline the need to understand contemporary India in the light of its long argumentative tradition.
The understanding and use of this rich argumentative tradition are critically important, Sen argues, for the success of India's democracy, the defence of its secular politics, the removal of inequalities related to class, caste, gender and community, and the pursuit of sub-continental peace.
As India's multicultural society confronts violent sectarianism at home and a range of destabilizing forces internationally, these illuminating essays from Nobel Prize winning economist Sen (most of which began as articles or lectures over the past decade) offer a timely and cogent examination of the country's long history of heterodoxy and public discourse. With sparkling erudition and crisp prose, Sen reminds readers of a capacious cultural legacy that has nourished a plethora of religious communities (including Hindu, Buddhist, Jain, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Parsee, Sikh and Baha'i), as well as a venerable line of atheist and materialist thought, while fostering ancient advances in science and mathematics, and inclusive theories of governance. Challenging the notion of the West as sole originator of liberal values, the book which ranges over subjects as diverse as India's ancient calendars, nuclear arms policy, relationship with China, gender and class inequality, representations in the Western imagination and the competing national visions of Tagore and Gandhi bears forcefully on contemporary debates over multiculturalism, secularism and postcolonial identity. Sen's lucid reasoning and thoroughgoing humanism, meanwhile, ensure a lively and commanding defense of diversity and dialogue.