• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Identity Politics in India and Europe combines qualitative methods (20 interviews) with historical and philosophical analysis. The first part of the book discusses the history of perceptions between the Europe of Latin Christianity and the so-called Muslim world, starting from the 7th century onwards. The second part is devoted to a discussion on the emergence of modernity and how it changed the identity politics of earlier times. The third part explores the role that intellectual elites have to play. It comprises interviews of eminent scholars and thinkers in India such as Imtiaz Ahmad and Ashis Nandy. These make for an insightful read, especially as subtle ideological differences surface in their responses to a set of common questions.

The Political
The political

As most people would agree, the political is about bringing people together to make collectively binding decisions on issues that are of concern to them all. Politics is thus about making collectively binding decisions. Collective decisions, in turn, are based on the choice made by those who participate in the political process. The choice may be controversial and based on majority decision. But then the rule of whether to take decisions by simple (or qualified) majority constitutes a choice that precedes the decision. To avoid an infinite regress, such higher order choices regarding the appropriate decision-making procedures for certain types of collective decisions have to rest in an original choice, counterfactually made by literally all the individuals concerned, including future generations. From ...

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