ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

CitizenshipSubscribe to Citizenship

How to Become a Good Public Intellectual?

This essay is an attempt to ruminate on Romila Thapar’s writings on and as a public intellectual in today’s India. Edward Said’s 1993 Reith Lectures, titled ‘Representations of the Intellectual’ are taken together as a springboard for stimulating a conversation around Romila Thapar’s ideas on syndicated Hinduism, citizenship, nationalism, technocracy, dissent, and democracy. Rabindranath Tagore, D.D. Kosambi, A.K. Ramanujam, Amartya Sen, and Giorgio Agamben enter this conversation too, but on Thapar’s terms and with Said as the interlocutor. This essay asks a series of questions including ‘Who is a public intellectual?’, ‘What is her role in the society?’, ‘Why is Romila Thapar’s voice as a public intellectual so important?’, to argue that the public intellectual is a political being, a societal necessity, and the quintessential ‘anti-national’, all qualities exemplified in the life and works of Romila Thapar.

Electoral Rolls and Aadhaar

By linking Aadhaar with electoral roll data, the constitutional essence of universal adult franchise is vitiated.

Navigating through Democracy

Politics of the Poor: Negotiating Democracy in Contemporary India by Indrajit Roy, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, New York, US, Melbourne, Australia; New Delhi and Singapore: 2018; pp xxi + 521, price not indicated.

Citizenship and Women’s Agency

Gendered Citizenship: Understanding Gendered Violence in Democratic India by Natasha Behl, New York: Oxford University Press, 2019; pp xi + 172, price not indicated.

Reinventing the Commons

The article makes a case for the reinvention of the commons in the social sciences. The individual treatment of rights reduces the collective to a mass of persons. Instead the commons acknowledges the inviolate place of humans as part of the cosmos. The marginal and dissenting imagination must invoke the poetry of nature as it engages the current politics and economics. The commons, in its diversity, seeks wisdom through a dialogue of knowledges, moving beyond traditional “publics,” and “time.”

Assam and the NRC

Deepankar Basu and Debarshi Das, in their article “Assam’s Politics and the NRC” (EPW, 1 February 2020), have raised a few critical issues regarding the fundamental flaws in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) updating process in Assam and emphasised building an alternative narrative. Their...

Discussion: 'Linking Excesses in NRC Process to Assamese Xenophobia Is Unwarranted'

The false narrative of Assamese "xenophobia" stinks, and today, except the Hindutva camp, no mainstream Assamese organisation propagates racist or communal agenda in the state.

Revisiting the City–Capital Symbiosis

The urban is related to the capital through the very notion of accumulation. What goes into building the urban, both materially and perceptively is the accumulated capital, which in turn gets both (re)produced and consumed within the same set-up. The present circulation and accumulation of global capital has resulted in the creation of First World spaces within Third World cities, heterotopias which complicate claims to urban “city”zenships. The emergence of capital-infected cities and heterotopias is explored along with differential claims to urban “city”zenship using an interface with the Indian city as a context.

Engaging with ‘a Quintessential University Person’

Conversations with Ambedkar: 10 Ambedkar Memorial Lectures edited by Valerian Rodrigues, Tulika Books and Ambedkar University Delhi, July 2019; pp 282, ₹ 750.

Who is to Blame for the Refugee Crisis?

The refugee crisis that the world is currently facing is a long-term effect of colonialism.

Pages

Back to Top