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

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Reimagining the Idea of a University in India

In response to the editor’s column, “University as an Idea’’ by Gopal Guru (EPW, 11 January 2020) and Swatahsiddha Sarkar’s article, “The Idea of a University in India” (EPW, 4 April 2020), this article seeks to begin a critical examination of the normative ideas that were presupposed in the earlier articles.

Student Protests: Universities Need to be Committed to Principles of Social Justice

While colleges often enable the search for more just social systems, spaces for independent thinking are shrinking and threatened by increasing majoritarianism.

Tumultuous Journey of the University of the Punjab

The first three Indian universities—at Calcutta, Bombay, and Madras—were set up in 1857, inaugurating the Indian higher education system. The University of the Punjab was the fourth Indian university, which was set up at Lahore, the capital of undivided Punjab, in 1882. After India’s partition in 1947, this was the only Indian university that was split up into two. One part continued at Lahore while the other shifted to a new campus in Chandigarh. The story of this journey of the university through the tumultuous years of partition is both fascinating and painful.

Why Indian Universities Are Places Where Savarnas Get Affection and Dalit-Bahujans Experience Distance

Dalit Bahujan students relentlessly dream and struggle to experience an intellectual ambience in elite institutions sans caste prejudice to recreate their “being” in radically new ways in a society that otherwise seems to be forgetting what resistance with conscience can deliver in reimagining life and politics afresh.

Why India Needs JNU

A lifelong associate of Jawaharlal Nehru University reflects on what JNU means to higher education, research, and indeed what it means to the people of India.

Where Teachers Learn

In "Continuum of Ignorance in Indian Universities" (EPW, 28 November 2015) Rajesh Misra and Supriya Singh raise a number of critical questions. Their article, a response to V Kalyan Shankar and Rohini Sahni's piece "What Does an MA Know?" (EPW, 1 August 2015), does not, however, focus on remedial measures.

The Great Education Divide

It is time to break the mythical divide between general higher education that raises consciousness, and professional education that is instrumental to employment and marketable research.

Targeting Institutions of Higher Education

The ideology central to the Bharatiya Janata Party-Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has no space or use for liberal thought and values. Education for such organisations means only what can be called a kind of catechism. This is a memorisation of a narrow set of questions rooted in faith and belief and an equally narrow set of answers that prohibit any doubt or deviation. Therefore, educational centres that allow questioning and discussion are anathema and have to be dismantled.

University and the Nation

If nationalist sentiments are the only and final prerogative to belong to an academic community, then it must also be reiterated, a university has no business to share these sentiments. The founding figures of JNU knew it and it is upon the entire community of students, teachers and concerned citizens to safeguard the university against such jingoistic versions of nationalism.

Removing Discrimination in Universities

How can we create just and non-discriminatory spaces in universities when the discriminatory practices are not obvious and apparent? The author suggests two ways—reporting and addressing indirect discrimination and a periodic discrimination audit of educational institutions.
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