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

Social SciencesSubscribe to Social Sciences

Reinventing the Commons

The article makes a case for the reinvention of the commons in the social sciences. The individual treatment of rights reduces the collective to a mass of persons. Instead the commons acknowledges the inviolate place of humans as part of the cosmos. The marginal and dissenting imagination must invoke the poetry of nature as it engages the current politics and economics. The commons, in its diversity, seeks wisdom through a dialogue of knowledges, moving beyond traditional “publics,” and “time.”

The Covid-19 Pandemic and the Crisis of the Social Sciences

This article raises wider questions like whether the social sciences have been able to provide any meaning to the Covid-19 crisis by exploring the life worlds of body, time and nature. It also focuses on the role of policy and the connectivity between social science and democracy.

Stated and Unstated Aims of NCERT Social Science Textbooks

Social science textbooks are not and cannot be objective or unbiased. What is included and what is excluded in a textbook indicates the ideology and the aims of the textbooks, whether the aims are stated or unstated. The questions are: Which ideology? Which aims? Some excerpts from the present NCERT (National Council of Educational Research and Training) textbooks indicate unstated aims of facilitating students' conformation and integration into the present social system. This is indicated by the use--and absence--of terms and concepts such as "capitalism" in these textbooks. Apparently the unstated aim is that if capitalism remains un-understood and unanalysed, it may not be questioned, and students will not realise that there is any alternative to capitalism. In the present circumstances, what can a textbook maker who stands on the left do?

A Critique of Eurocentric Social Science and the Question of Alternatives

Following a critical examination of existing theoretical framework within which social sciences are taught and researched in various universities of the non-western world, it is proposed that not just the content but even the assumptions and methodologies have been uncritically imported from the European academic tradition. Though the critique of Eurocentrism in the social sciences is well accepted, there is very little display of either courage or determination among academics in non-western universities in raising their own distinct set of assumptions that would enable them to work and conduct meaningful research outside the framework of western academic preoccupations and interests.

Social Science Policy in the New Millennium

A recent policy workshop on social sciences in India drew attention to the need to formulate a comprehensive social science policy - one that would not only create a holistic interdisciplinary paradigm for social science research, but also encourage research in regional languages and create a relevant database.

Disobedience and Social Sciences

One way of expressing solidarity with the tens of thousands of Iraqis who have suffered in this war is to reject offers of collaboration and support in research in the social sciences and humanities from governments that do not know the meaning of accountability.

Teaching against Communalism

Communalism has so far been an ideology that anti-communal forces have tried to address in the informal sectors of pedagogy. What are the issues involved in building a formal syllabus for university students that systematically deals with communalism with a view to encouraging a principled rejection of its ideas and practices?

How Egalitarian Are the Social Sciences in India?

Social science practice in India has harboured a cultural hierarchy dividing it into a vast, inferior mass of academics who pursue empirical social science and a privileged few who are considered the theoretical pundits with reflective capacity which makes them intellectually superior to the former. To use a familiar analogy, Indian social science represents a pernicious divide between theoretical brahmins and empirical shudras.

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