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

Radhika DesaiSubscribe to Radhika Desai

Hindutva and Fascism

Fascism: Essays on Europe and India edited by Jairus Banaji, New Delhi: Three Essays Collective, 2013; pp xii + 233, ₹ 450 (enlarged and updated edition).

A Latter-day Fascism?

This essay reconstructs Narendra Modi's path to power. The story of the Bharatiya Janata Party's rise is explained in terms of its ability to gain the support of the "provincial propertied classes" in certain states, mainly in northern and western India. The immediate background to the 2014 elections and the making of the nexus between the capitalist classes and Modi's BJP is recounted. The essay also looks at the extent and limits of Modi's electoral achievement and concludes with reflections on the possibilities of resistance.

A Labour of Recovery

Theorising the National Crisis: Sanmugathasan, the Left and the Ethnic Conflict in Sri Lanka by Ravi Vaitheespara;

Tryst with Fate

The origins of the tension between India and Pakistan go beyond diplomatic imperatives, as each country is keen to pose itself as America's lead ally in the region. This paper while situating the relationship between the two nations against the backdrop of new American imperalism, argues that the conflict will remain unresolved until its very terms and those defining partition, the relationships between communities too, are revisited.

The Last Satrap Revolt?

The regionally-based, 'vernacular'-speaking, rural, but also rapidly urbanising, lower caste propertied and more or less bourgeois groups have been central to the Congress's decline and have already restructured the polity, regionalising it. The 1999 elections will hinge on the fate of these forces, whether or not the real issues and principles finally emerge from the outrageous opportunism these forces currently display.

Culturalism and Contemporary Right

The formation of a Hindu nationalist government in May 1998 at the crest of hindutva's recent electoral surge clearly testifies to the increasingly authoritarian urges of India's ruling class. Hindutva's chances of holding state power more securely lie in a more complete hegemonisation of this now overwhelmingly capitalist class. Hindutva pursues this political aim in part by adapting its hitherto excessively shrill and narrowly petty bourgeois ideology to the more settled nature, proclivities and imperatives of the ruling class. To this end it commands the resources of contemporary culturalism and neo-Gandhian discourse, must be seen as part of this broader effort to change and update hindutva.
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