Religion, Caste, and Politics in India
Columbia University Press, June 2011
Following independence, the Nehruvian approach to socialism in India rested on three pillars: secularism and democracy in the political domain, state intervention in the economy, and diplomatic non-alignment mitigated by pro-Soviet leanings after the 1960s. These features defined a distinct « Indian model, » if not the country’s political identity.
From this starting point, Christophe Jaffrelot traces the transformation of India throughout the latter half of the twentieth century, particularly the 1980s and 90s. The world’s largest democracy has sustained itself by embracing not only the vernacular politicians of linguistic states, but also Dalits and « Other Backward Classes, » or OBCs.
Christophe Jaffrelot is CNRS research director at CERI where he served as director from 2000 to 2008 and teaches South Asian politics and history, Arguably one of the world’s most respected writers on Indian society and politics, he has published many works, including The Hindu Nationalist Movement and Indian Politics, 1925 to the 1990s; India’s Silent Revolution: The Rise of the Lower Castes in North India; and Dr. Ambedkar and Untouchability: Fighting the Indian Caste System. See his publications.