Books For You: India After Modi | Populism and the Right

Editor | Non-Fiction

Have you realized that the divide between ‘Us’ and ‘Them’ has grown steadily in Indian politics? Do you sometimes wonder whether it will be repaired at all in the near future?

Do you ever pause to reflect why emotions spill on the streets and why democratic institutions in India have become dysfunctional? Have you thought about why we get hurt easily and how this gets reflected in everyday politics?

India after Modi attempts to address these questions through an analysis of events like Award Wapsi, demonetization, the crisis in JNU and higher education, and electoral outcomes, including in the states of Bihar, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. Through this collection of essays, India After Modi  | Populism and the Right (Published by Bloomsbury, Price Rs 599) Ajay Gudavarthy focuses exclusively on Indian democracy after Narendra Modi took over as the prime minister in 2014. He looks at the politics that India has been witnessing since then and addresses emerging issues in Indian democracy, including that of women’s participation, new urban spaces, and the role of youth.

Critic Partha Chatterjee, Columbia University, New York, said: “India after Modi does not merely condemn. It takes the job of a critique seriously by pointing out the many ways in which the BJP has offered numerous marginal as well as once-powerful but recently disempowered groups a fraternal space of recognition as Hindus. In a climate of generalized anxiety and rampant hatred, such people have been emboldened to seek vigilante justice by attacking Muslims as the safest enemy. Gudavarthy’s book is complex and deeply disturbing.”

Anand Teltumbde, Goa Institute of Management, Goa, said:  “This timely book diligently captures the qualitative kink in the history of postcolonial India with the help of various markers…a heady mix of European fascism and Indian Brahmanism…A must-­read for all those who wish to understand the complex reality of contemporary India.”

About the author

Ajay Gudavarthy is Assistant Professor at the Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Earlier, he taught at the National Law School of India University, Bengaluru. In 2012, he had been Visiting Fellow, Centre for Citizenship, Civil Society and Rule of Law, University of Aberdeen. He was Visiting Faculty at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Hyderabad, in 2011, and Visiting Fellow, Goldsmith College, University of London, in 2010. Gudavarthy was the Charles Wallace Visiting Fellow (2008), the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), London. His published works include Re-Framing Democracy and Agency in India: Interrogating Political Society (edited, 2012), Politics of Post-Civil Society: Contemporary History of Political Movements in India (2013), Maoism, Democracy and Globalisation: Cross-Currents in Indian Politics (edited, 2015), and Revolutionary Violence Versus Democracy: Narratives from India (edited, 2017)

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