• 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.

Identity Politics in India
Identity politics in India

We do not have to look far East to find horrifying examples of identity politics. At Europe's own south-eastern flank, we find the bloodiest examples resulting from the politicisation of ethnic and religious identities in the course of the recent ‘invention’1 of the people of the Balkans. An analysis of identity politics in this context confirms the worst apprehensions.2 The world-embracing discourse about identity (national, ethnic, communitarian, religious, cultural and multicultural) can be interpreted as indicative of these processes of fermentation that stir the global economy of ideas. John W. Meyer has given us some clue about how ideas, norms, models and patterns of social and political order gain hegemony in an increasingly global cultural reference frame. Learned ...

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