Articles by Paul R BrassSubscribe to Paul R Brass

Development of an Institutionalised Riot System in Meerut City, 1961 to 1982

Meerut city in Uttar Pradesh has been a site of endemic Hindu-Muslim riots since before independence. In an attempt to explain the 'institutionalised systems of riot production (IRS)' that are first created and then activated during periods of political mobilisation or at the time of elections, this article focuses on two riots in Meerut that occurred in post-independence India and were divided by a gap of 20 years. The 1961 riot is posed as a benchmark to contrast with later communal events of 1982, to illustrate the changes - more intense and deadly - that took place in the intervening period and to explain how and why these changes took place.

The World's Largest Hypocrisies

The Maverick Republic: Thirty Years of Coverage by Jawid Laiq; Roli Books, New Delhi, 2002; pp xii + 240, Rs 295

India, Myron Weiner and the Political Science of Development

The argument here, in brief, is that the political science of development has itself been implicated in the developmentalist framework of India's elites. Further, despite the rhetoric of socialism that accompanied that framework under Nehru, both the practice in India and the development theory that justified it were fundamentally conservative. The conservative elements in the developmentalist framework comprised an ideology of state-exaltation arising out of a 'fear of disorder' or an orientation towards the elimination of 'the cause of unrest'. So implicated were political scientists in the developmentalist goals of India's elites that they failed to provide an independent basis for critique that has become increasingly necessary as it has become more and more obvious that those goals have failed to transform India into the modern, industrial state of its elite's imaginings, have failed at the same time to provide for the basic minimum needs of its people, have failed to eliminate 'the causes of unrest' and have instead drawn the country into the ugly morass of state terrorism in the north-east, Punjab and Kashmir and have failed to provide a basis for accommodation between the Hindu and Muslim populations of the country.

General Elections, 1996 in Uttar Pradesh-Divisive Struggles Influence Outcome

Divisive Struggles Influence Outcome Paul R Brass For decades, the principal lines of political and economic competition in the state were between the upper castes and the middle status or backward castes, with the scheduled castes largely pawns in this predominant struggle and the Muslims largely on the sidelines. The old upper caste-backward caste divide has remained and, in fact, has intensified; it is reflected in the bitterness of the competiton between the BJP and its upper caste voters, on the one hand, and the SP and its yadav and other backward caste voters, on the other hand. However, the scheduled castes are no longer pawns and the Muslims are no longer on the sidelines.

American Political Science and South Asian Studies-Virtue Unrewarded

The study of Indian politics in the US has for long remained an insignificant and stagnant sub-field of American political science. There are academic and ideological reasons for this neglect, but it also stems from the restrictions placed on foreign researchers by the Indian government. In effect, American scholars have become agents of the government of India rather than of the CIA.

Chaudhui Charan Singh-An Indian Political Life

An Indian Political Life Paul R Brass Although accused of rank opportunism and lust for power with no regard for die interests of the country after the 1979 Janata debacle, Charan Singh was one of the last important leaders of the country whose active political life spanned the pit-independence political movements to post-independence party politics. He belonged to a generation of politicians whose political experience encompassed district, state and national politics.

Muslim Separatism in United Provinces-Social Context and Political Strategy before Partition

Social Context and Political Strategy before Partition Paul R Brass How can the special role of the Muslims of the United Provinces in the origins and development of Muslim separatism in India and the intensity of Hindu-Muslim conflict in the province be explained?
Back to Top