The New Republic – Populism, Power And The Trajectories Of Indian Democracy – Shray Mehta & Ravi Kumar


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This edited volume interrogates the dynamics of populism in India which is going through an interregnum. It builds the argument that the 2019 general elections are a break in the democratic history of the Indian state. Because of this, for the first time a social movement has managed to capture the state in India. This volume interrogates the nature of how this has come to be with special attention to dynamics of identity, class and power in India’s post-colonial liberal democracy. Through conversations with prominent scholars and activists it builds an intellectual history of how the BJP has come to be in a hegemonic position and explores its relations to the neoliberal economy, party politics and social movements in the previous decades. Using this, it interrogates questions of identity and violence and speculates on the possible future trajectories of Indian democracy.

Shray Mehta is a qualitative sociologist and an ethnographer. He researches democratic politics with a focus on historical and political sociology. He is currently pursuing a PhD at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, National University of Singapore.

Ravi Kumar teaches Sociology at the South Asian University. His area of research includes political economy of identity politics, social movements, neoliberal impact on education and processes of knowledge production. He co-edits a book series titles Social Movements, Dissent and Transformative Action (Routledge: Delhi) and Conversations on/for South Asia (Aakar Books: Delhi).


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